News : Relegation battle in Berlin: tough affair – sport
In a game that exuded the charm of a summer soccer game for a long time, Hertha BSC missed the chance to turn the upcoming game at Schalke 04 into a match point. Three days after the at times impressive 3-0 win against SC Freiburg, the Berliners couldn’t get past a goalless draw against Arminia Bielefeld. Because of their corona-related, two-week compulsory break, the Berliners still have one game less than their competitors in the relegation battle – and thus the best starting position with a tie with Werder Bremen and Bielefeld. Hertha remains table 14. and has the better goal difference than Hanseatic and Westphalia.
The mega-rotation against Freiburg, when he brought in nine new players, was followed by an only slightly smaller rotation. Compared to the brilliant 3-0 win against the Breisgauer, Dardai offered eight new players, only goalkeeper Schwolow, Ascacibar and Piatek were in the starting line-up like against Freiburg. The formation was really surprising because the nominal right-back Deyovaisio Zeefuik started on the left lane – and left-back Maximilian Mittelstädt started on the right.
After eight minutes, the trick almost paid off. After a good shift in the game, Mittelstädt first moved with the ball from the right to the inside – and then with the left. Arminia’s goalkeeper Ortega dived brilliantly and deflected the ball. A little later Mittelstädt clashed with Arminias Anderson-Lenda Lucoqui in a header duel, the game was interrupted for six minutes. After that, the encounter became a strangely tenacious affair. There were more goal-area scenes than soccer, and more opportunities for Arminia. Manuel Prietl’s long-range shot just missed (17th), Andreas Voglsammer found his master in Hertha’s goalkeeper Schwolow from 17 meters.
Matheus Cunha also has to be replaced
It almost seemed that Mittelstädt suffered on behalf of the whole of Hertha in his collision. After Mittelstädt had to be replaced on suspicion of a concussion, at least Hertha’s Colombian Jhon Córdoba caused danger on counterattacks. In the 34th minute he slipped in the penalty area and almost dropped the ball against the post, shortly before the break he hit the side netting from an acute angle.
At halftime, Hertha’s coach Dardai replaced the fast loaner Nemanja Radonjic. But it was keeper Schwolow who was initially in the center of interest. After a corner, he brilliantly parried a header from Amos Pieper (56th). A little later, Hertha’s Brazilian Matheus Cunha was on the floor – and had to be replaced as well. In the end there were attempts on both sides to score goals from a distance. But basically the game just came to a halt – as if both teams wanted to come to terms with ending Sunday above the direct relegation places.