By Ben Sully
Hertha BSC have the chance to collect a third consecutive win, when they travel to the SchücoArena to face an Arminia Bielefeld side who are desperate for victory.
It would probably be fair to suggest that Bielefeld must win on Saturday if they are to have a realistic chance of beating the drop.
They enter Saturday’s contest two points behind Stuttgart, who occupy a relegation playoff spot, while Hertha are six points clear of Die Arminen in 15th place.
Marco Kostmann’s first game in interim charge did not inspire any sort of a reaction from Bielefeld, who slumped to a 3-1 defeat away to FC Köln.
It was a result that only piled more pressure on a side, who are now lost their last three matches, while they are winless in their previous eight games.
Seven of those eight contests have all ended in defeat, with Bielefeld’s last win occurring in the middle of February.
As a result of their poor, no team has picked up fewer Bundesliga points in 2022 than Die Arminen, with goalscoring proving to be a major factor in their struggles.
Bielefeld are currently the lowest scorers in the top flight after scoring only 24 goals in their 31 league games. What is more concerning is that they have scored just three goals across their last 10 matches.
Although confidence may be at a premium in the home dressing room, Bielefeld can take inspiration from the 1-0 win they picked up in last season’s home meeting with Hertha.
If Bielefeld are to collect three points at the weekend then they will have to do it without the services of Cedric Brunner and Fabian Klos, who are both unavailable due to injury issues.
Not many would have picked Felix Magath to take over from Tayfun Korkut, but as it currently stands, the 68-year-old’s appointment looks to be something of a masterstroke.
They enter Saturday’s encounter off the back of two consecutive victories, which has helped Hertha move out of the bottom three, where they now sit four points clear of the relegation playoff place.
A 1-0 win over Augsburg was backed up last weekend as Die Alte Dame beat Stuttgart 2-0 at the Olympiastadion. Davie Selke opened the scoring within four minutes, and as Stuttgart pushed for an equaliser, Hertha wrapped up the win in stoppage time thanks to an Ishak Belfodil effort.
The visitors head back on their travels for Saturday’s contest, as they bid to win consecutive away league games for the first time this season, and a win against Bielefeld would go a long way to securing Hertha’s Bundesliga status.
Stevan Jovetic and Alexander Schwolow are both missing through injury, while Vladimir Darida is suspended due to an accumulation of yellow cards.
Final lineups are posted before start.
FC Koln – Bielefeld 3-1
|8th||A. Schöpf ↪85|
|23||J Serra ↪77|
|21||R Hack ↩77|
|15||N. De Medina|
|7||G. Castro ↩85|
|17||B. İnce ↩77|
Hertha BSC – Stuttgart 2-0
|4||D Boyata (c)|
|21||M. Plattenhardt ↪46|
|6||V. Darida ↪74|
|27||K. Boateng ↪63|
|7||D Selke ⚽ ↪78|
|14||I. Belfodil ↩63 ⚽|
|3||F. Bjorkan ↩46|
|5||N Stark ↩74|
|17||M. Mittelstadt ↩63|
|10||J. Ekkelenkamp ↩78|