• Hertha and Hannover kick off Matchday 29.
  • Hertha three points clear of fourth-placed Gladbach.
  • Rock-bottom Hannover ten points adrift of safety.

Hannover 96 travel to the capital to take on third-placed Hertha Berlin on Friday, with their chances of beating the drop hanging by a thread (kick-off 20:30CEST/18:30GMT).

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Bottom of the table since Matchday 18, the Reds sit some ten points adrift of safety following last weekend's 3-0 home defeat to Hamburger SV - a game which cost head coach Thomas Schaaf his job. Under-19s boss Daniel Stendel has been handed the unenviable task of assuming first-team duties for the final six games of the season.

Read: Hannover part company with Schaaf

Watch: Hannover 0-3 Hertha

The 42-year-old could scarcely have wished for a more testing debut, although he will have been encouraged by Hertha’s uncharacteristically limp performance against Borussia Mönchengladbach. The Old Lady went down 5-0 at BORUSSIA-PARK on Matchday 28, but still hold a three-point advantage over the chasing pack in the neck-and-neck race for a place in next season's UEFA Champions League.

Watch: Gladbach 5-0 Hertha

Matchday 12 rewind: Hannover 1-3 Hertha

© gettyimages / Franklin

Goals: 0-1 Kalou (27'), 0-2 Kalou (60'), 1-2 Kiyotake (70'), 1-3 Kalou (87')

Salomon Kalou scored his first Bundesliga hat-trick as Hertha made light work of Hannover at the HDI-Arena.

Watch: match highlights

Matchday 29 - match stats

  • Hertha's heaviest defeats of the Pal Dardai era have both come against Gladbach (5-0 and 1-4).
  • On average, Hertha conceded a goal every 20 minutes against Hertha compared to every 101 minutes over the course of the season.
  • Stendel made 96 appearances as a player for Hannover, scoring 12 goals.
  • Hertha have failed to score in five of their 11 Rückrunde matches. They scored in all but two of their 17 outings during the Hinrunde.
  • Hannover goalkeeper Ron-Robert Zieler has not missed a kick in the Bundesliga since 9 April 2011 (170 matches). Sepp Meier, Uli Stein and Harald Schumacher are the only goalkeepers to have made more consecutive Bundesliga appearances.

Possible line-ups

Hertha: Jarstein – Weiser, Stark, Lustenberger, Plattenhardt – Skjelbred, Cigerci – Haraguchi, Darida, Kalou – Ibisevic

Absentees: Allagui (light training), Brooks (knee/back)

Coach: Pal Dardai

Hannover: Zieler - Sakai, Milosevic, Schulz, Sorg - Sane, Hoffmann - Karaman, Kiyotake, Prib - Hugo Almeida

Absentees: Andreasen (ankle)

Coach: Daniel Stendel

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