Are the Hanseatic League rising? It is possible. The Berliners lost the first leg 0-1 and are under pressure before the second leg on Monday.

The victorious HSV players formed a circle and were then celebrated by their large supporters, while the Berlin pros were scattered and helpless in front of their bench. Advantage HSV! Felix Magath and Hertha must tremble powerfully. With a courageous performance, Hamburger SV took the next step towards returning to the Bundesliga and brought Hertha BSC even closer to the sporting abyss.

Ludovit Reis (57th minute) made sure the Hanseatic League won 1-0 (0-0) in a heated relegation game on Thursday evening with an actually unsuccessful cross. With a draw in the home game, HSV can put four years of second division sadness behind them on Monday.

The Berliners, who are again too harmless and ineffective in the end, are threatened with a seventh course in the second division without a significant increase in performance in the Volksparkstadion and their coach Magath, who is still hapless as a rescue expert, is threatened with a bitter relegation premiere from the Bundesliga against his heart club.

“I don’t know if it was the backpack. (…) We played like a Bundesliga club, but so did HSV,” said Magath on the Sky TV channel and said, looking at the starting position for the second leg on Monday: ” It got a little worse because of this 0:1. It’s still open. HSV has the better cards, but we don’t go to Hamburg without a chance.”

Hertha must see the result positively

On the other hand, the Hamburgers were happy. “It was a super performance from the squad. We didn’t allow much and took the chance,” said HSV sports director Jonas Boldt and assessed the situation as “comfortable”. And coach Tim Walter added to Sat.1: “We enjoy the whole thing because we deserve it. We’ll take the euphoria with us. We absolutely want to. This is the youngest team in the 2nd division worthy of honor.”

The atmosphere in the Berlin Olympic Stadium was ready for the first division. 75,500 spectators – including almost 20,000 HSV fans – ensured a tingling atmosphere. There was no class difference on the pitch. After five second division victories in a row, Hamburg showed her great self-confidence. The much-discussed momentum worked. Hertha got the next blow to the neck after the three relegation match points and the fall to 16th place in the Bundesliga. As in the 1: 2 against Fortuna Düsseldorf ten years ago, there was a home defeat in the nerve game of the relegation. At that time there was no salvation.

“We also have to see it positively that it’s only 1-0. Everything’s still possible. We know that. Of course it was too thin. We wanted to submit, that didn’t work. Only Monday counts, we hit everything in,” said Berlin’s Niklas Stark.

The winning goal from Hamburg was particularly bitter for Hertha keeper Oliver Christensen on his competitive debut, as he did not cut a good figure when Reis crossed the goal. The Dane had moved between the posts because Marcel Lotka was unavailable due to a broken nose and a minor concussion.

Game with few scoring chances

All eyes were on Magath. And the experienced coach let it be known that he was “not really happy” in view of the duel with his long-standing club, which he had led as a player to the European Cup victory of the national champions. Before the game, “a lot of messages were sent back and forth,” reported Magath: “Ultimately, I can push something like that aside. It mustn’t affect me, I’m too conscientious of that.”

Magath was correspondingly committed in the coaching zone, he quickly put his jacket aside. Self-confidence that his team did not bring to the pitch. The second division third from the Hanseatic city took command in the first half, had field advantages and a chance plus.

However, the uncertainty among the hosts was palpable after they failed to stay up in the Bundesliga several times. A leader was missing in the game. Kevin-Price Boateng was not trusted to play the role of Magath because he was not in the right condition. And midfield clearer Santiago Ascacibar was missing yellow card suspension.

However, since HSV also acted imprecisely, a game developed with only a few chances to score. The first excitement came in the 32nd minute when Peter Pekarik blocked a shot from Robert Glatzel with his arm. However, there was no penalty due because there had been a handball by HSV player Maximilian Rohr beforehand.

Angry attacks from the team from Berlin

Christensen was lucky just before the break when Glatzel headed the ball into the side netting (40′). On the other hand, a razor-thin offside position by Ishak Belfodil prevented the Berlin opening goal (44th).

In the second half, Magath relied on more experience with Stevan Jovetic for junior player Luca Wollschläger, and Hertha also became bolder. Jovetic also had the best chance to date when he put the ball just wide of the goal (56′). But in the middle of the urge phase, HSV hit ice cold through Reis.

The Berliners reacted with furious attacks, but Hamburg keeper Heuer Fernandes was there twice against Belfodil (61st) and an unsuccessful attempt by HSV defender Mario Vuskovic (63rd). But Hertha was now even more susceptible to counterattacks, and things got dicey a few times.