German Bundesliga - Hoffenheim vs. Hertha Berlin - Preview & Prediction

By Valdis Pans

After going five straight games without a victory, the 9th-placed Hoffenheim will hope for better luck while hosting Hertha Berlin, who have triumphed in just one of their past six outings. Kick-off - at 9:30 AM ET on Saturday.

Hoffenheim Loses Ground

After qualifying for the Champions League twice in back-to-back seasons with 4th- and 3rd-place finishes in 2016-17 and ’17-18 respectively, Hoffenheim ended last year’s campaign in the 9th place and look poised for the same fate this time around once again. After 25 matchdays prior to the coronavirus outbreak, the team sits 9th with 35 points (W10 D5 L10), trailing the Top 6 by mere two points. Die Kraichgauer have managed to garner victories versus both Bayern Munich (2-1 in Bavaria) and Borussia Dortmund (2-1 at home), earning four points in both outings against the 5th-placed Bayer Leverkusen this year. Still, the team’s last five contests have been a disappointment, bringing in just two points from a possible 15 (D2 L3).

The seven goals of Croatian forward Andrej Kramaric lead Hoffenheim’s scoring table, with Danish left wing-back Robert Skov (3 snipes) having collected the most assists (4). Goalie Oliver Baumann sits 6th in the ‘‘most saves’’ chart, having stopped 74 shots in 21 starts, keeping the opposition off the scoresheet on four occasions this season. He is giving up a goal every 48 minutes. Hoffenheim, meanwhile, are 9th in most goals scored this year (35), while holding the 12th position in most shots recorded (314). The team controls the ball 52.0% of the time, ranking 5th in this department.

Hertha Berlin Try To Claw Back

Following a soap-opera chain of events, which has seen Hertha Berlin make three managerial changes throughout this season thus far, including one that saw ex-Germany, Bayern Munich and USA coach Jurgen Klinsmann resigning just after 10 weeks in charge, Die Alte Dame now finds itself in a fight to avoid relegation. The team currently sits 13h in the league with 28 points from 25 games (W7 D7 L11), just six points above the drop-zone. Even though Hertha Berlin have lost just three Bundesliga contests since New Year (W4 D5 L3), the start of the ongoing campaign with eight defeats in 13 fixtures (W3 D2 L8) has left its stingy mark.

Fifteen different players have scored so far for Die Alte Dame this season, with Dodi Lukebakio leading the bunch with five strikes, and January signing Matheus Cunha averaging a team-high 4.5 shots per game, having netted twice in four starts since his arrival from RB Leipzig. Goalie Thomas Kraft could make his third consecutive start for Hertha Berlin, having earned draws in his last three starts. He has made 10 saves in four appearances this season, conceding a goal every 40 minutes. His team, meanwhile, is 4th from the bottom in goals scored (32), dead last in most shots delivered (267), and has a 46.8% ball possession, ranking 13th in the league.


Hoffenheim’s home record this season is hardly impressive (W5 D1 L7 with 31 goals allowed). Still, hosting Hertha Berlin on Saturday does not look like the worst of propositions to restart their current campaign with. Die Alte Dame has been solid on its last five travels (W3 D2), but ranks dead last in the league in shots registered. Besides, the team has failed to beat Hoffenheim in their previous eight encounters (D3 L5), winning just once in the last 12 head-to-head matchups (W1 D4 L7). Both teams have scored in five of their past six meetings.

Best bets:

Hoffenheim to win (+115)

Both teams to score (-155)

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Valdis Pans

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