Hamburg endured a 14th Bundesliga game without a win on Saturday, slipping to a 2-1 defeat at home to Hertha Berlin at the Volksparkstadion.
Hamburg 1-2 Hertha Berlin
Goals: 1-0 Douglas Santos (25'), 1-1 Lazaro (56'), 1-2 Kalou (63')
Trailing the relegation play-off spot by four points at the start of the day, Hamburg began the game determined to put Hertha on the back foot. The game was played at a ferocious tempo, and though the hosts rode their luck – Julian Pollersbeck denied Vladimir Darida with a stunning low save – they deservedly went in front when Douglas Santos fired home to cap a great team move. In a breathless end to the half, Filip Kostic flashed a shot over the bar, moments after Pollersbeck had denied Vedad Ibisevic with another smart stop.
Hertha continued to carry a threat in the second half and grabbed a deserved leveller when Valentino Lazaro stole in to convert Marvin Plattenhardt’s cross. All of a sudden it was the visitors on top, and Salomon Kalou put them in front shortly after his introduction. Thereafter, Hamburg’s confidence seemed to disappear entirely and after such a good first half, they struggled to find any rhythm after falling behind. Christian Titz’s men remain seven points adrift with as many matches left to play, and time is against them if they are to remain as the Bundesliga’s only ever-present club.
- Titz is Hamburg's 18th coach in 10 years. Lazaro's goal was Hertha's first in the Bundesliga for 447 minutes.Douglas Santos scored his first Bundesliga goal with his 25th attempt and on his 41st top-flight appearance.Arp's goal in the reverse fixture - a 2-1 win for Hertha - saw him become Hamburg's youngest ever scorer at 17 years, nine months and 23 days of age.HSV have won their last two home games against Hertha with an aggregate score of 3-0.Kalou is Hertha's top scorer with ten goals. The Ivorian also has one assist to his name this season.Hertha have won eight of their last ten matches against the Bundesliga's only ever-present club.
Hamburg: Pollersbeck - Sakai (c), Jung, van Drongelen, Douglas - Steinmann, Holtby (Wood 65') - Ito, Hunt, Kostic - Arp (Waldschmidt 78')
Unused substitutes: Mathenia, Jatta, Papadopoulos, Seo, Salihovic
Absentees: Müller (ankle)
Coach: Christian Titz
Hertha: Jarstein - Lustenberger, Stark, Rekik - Weiser, Mittelstädt (Kalou 60'), Maier (Skjelbred 88'), Plattenhardt - Lazaro, Ibisevic (c), Darida
Unused substitutes: Kraft, Pekarik, Duda, Leckie, Selke
Coach: Pal Dardai
Watch: Titz: "Don't write us off!"