Hertha Berlin inflicted a first defeat of the 2018/19 season on Niko Kovac’s Bayern Munich at the Olympiastadion on Friday.
Hertha Berlin 2-0 Bayern Munich
Despite seeing plenty of the ball, Bayern were punished by a clinical Hertha side for not being their razor-sharp selves in front of goal. Robert Lewandowski headed over for the defending champions early on, before Hertha forged ahead. Manuel Neuer pulled off a fine save to deny Vedad Ibisevic’s header, but a foul from Jerome Boateng on Salomon Kalou in the ensuing chase prompted match referee Marco Fritz to award a penalty. Ibisevic made no mistake from 12 yards and, after Arjen Robben spurned a glorious close-range chance to level, Ondrej Duda capped a blistering counter to send Hertha in at half-time with a 2-0 lead.
Neuer was a virtual spectator after the restart as Bayern sought a way back into the contest. Thiago almost reduced the deficit five minutes in, but his looping header was hacked clear in front of Thomas Kraft’s goal by Jaivaro Dilrosun. It was beginning to look more and more like one of those days for Bayern as first Lewandowski and then James Rodriguez failed to get the telling touch on a devilish Joshua Kimmich corner. Kraft blocked a Lewandowski header, Serge Gnabry dragged wide and Niklas Süle blazed a desperate long-range attempt over as Bayern - having been held to a 1-1 draw by Augsburg in midweek - lost a competitive game and failed to score for the first time since Kovac took charge in the summer.
- Hertha recorded their first win over Bayern in 15 matches. They are unbeaten in their last four meetings with the record champions.Bayern had a season-high 16 attempts on goal in the second half.Ibisevic scored his 32nd Bundesliga goal for Hertha. The Old Lady have never lost when he has opened the scoring (W12, D4).Duda remains top of the scoring charts after netting his fifth of the season. He’s the first Hertha player to score five in the opening six games of a season since Ibisevic two years ago.James, Renato Sanches and Thiago started a Bundesliga match together for the first time.Kovac enjoyed two spells with Hertha as a player (1991-96 & 2003-06). He played 34 Bundesliga matches alongside current Berlin coach Pal Dardai. Kovac enjoyed two spells with Hertha as a player (1991-96 & 2003-06). He played 34 Bundesliga matches alongside current Berlin coach Pal Dardai.
Watch: Duda on his sparkling Hertha form!
Hertha: Kraft – Lazaro, Stark, Rekik, Mittelstädt – Maier, Skjelbred – Kalou (Leckie 71'), Duda, Dilrosun (Jastrzembski 90+1’) – Ibisevic (c) (Selke 53')
Unused subs: Klinsmann, Plattenhardt, Dardai, Lustenberger
Absentees: Grujic (ankle), Kurt (not considered), Torunarigha (Achilles)
Coach: Pal Dardai
Bayern: Neuer (c) – Kimmich, Boateng, Süle, Alaba – Thiago, Sanches (Gnabry 63') – Robben (Müller 52'), James (Wagner 73'), Ribery – Lewandowski
Unused subs: Ulreich, Hummels, Martinez, Meier
Absentees: Coman (ankle), Goretzka (ankle), Rafinha (ankle), Tolisso (knee)
Coach: Niko Kovac