DFB Cup finalists Eintracht Frankfurt missed the chance to climb back into the top six after slipping to a 3-0 defeat at home to Hertha Berlin.
Frankfurt 0-3 Hertha
Goals: 0-1 Selke (pen, 58’), 0-2 Leckie (77’), 0-3 Esswein (90+1’)
Red card: Hasebe (79’)
Aiming to pick up where they left off against Schalke in midweek, the Eagles harried the visitors from the get-go and should have gone ahead when Luka Jovic capitalised on a poor back-pass from Mathew Leckie, but the Benfica loanee failed to direct his effort on target. Mijat Gacinovic powered a shot against the underside of the crossbar ten minutes later, before Timothy Chandler - named in the starting line-up for the first time since Matchday 28 - fired straight at Hertha goalkeeper Rune Jarstein from the edge of the penalty area. The Norwegian custodian then produced a smart save from David Abraham to ensure the teams went in level at the break.
Pal Dardai’s side emerged for the second half with greater urgency and won a penalty when Makoto Hasebe brought down Davie Selke inside the area. The former Werder Bremen and RB Leipzig striker dusted himself down and convincingly fired home the spot-kick, sending Lukas Hradecky the wrong way for his eighth league goal of the season. Niko Kovac threw Marco Fabian into the fray with half an hour left, but Leckie doubled the visitors’ lead with 13 minutes remaining before Hasebe was shown a straight red card for lashing out at Selke. Substitute Alexander Esswein completed the scoring in stoppage time, putting the seal on a comfortable win that lifts Hertha to within four points of the Eagles in the table.
- Hertha have recorded more Bundesliga victories against Eintracht (28) than against any other top-flight club.The Eagles are now without a win in four Bundesliga matches.This was Eintracht’s first home defeat in nine league games. They had won five and drawn three of their previous eight.Selke scored with his first shot of the game at the Commerzbank Arena.The 23-year-old converted his first ever top-flight penalty to set the Berliners on their way to victory.Leckie doubled Hertha's lead with his first Bundesliga goal since Matchday 5.Only Bayern Munich (12) have conceded fewer goals on the road than Hertha (16) this season.
Frankfurt: Hradecky - Abraham (c), Hasebe, Russ (Willems 66’) - da Costa, Gacinovic, de Guzman (Mascarell 40’), Chandler - Barkok (Fabian 60’) - Haller, Jovic
Unused subs: Zimmermann, Fernandes, Hrgota, Cavar
Absentees: Falette (suspended), Salcedo (collarbone), Rebic (calf), Boateng (knock)
Coach: Niko Kovac
Hertha: Jarstein - Pekarik, Rekik (Lustenberger 88’), Torunarigha, Plattenhardt - Darida, Skjelbred (c) - Lazaro, Duda (Kalou 59’), Leckie - Selke (Esswein 86’)
Unused subs: Kraft, Ibisevic, Maier, Dardai
Absentees: Mittelstädt (hip)
Coach: Pal Dardai