Hamburger SV and Hertha Berlin will lock horns for the second leg of their Bundesliga relegation playoff contest on Monday evening, with the fixture being held at Volksparkstadion.
The home side will take a slender advantage into the affair, having recorded a 1-0 victory in the first leg on Thursday, with Ludovit Reis netting just before the hour for the second-tier outfit.
Hamburg have been absent from the top flight of German football since the 2017-18 campaign, when they were relegated in 17th position, finishing fourth in three straight 2. Bundesliga seasons before claiming third this term, boasting 60 points from their 34 matches during a strong campaign.
The Red Shorts have given themselves a real chance of securing a return to the Bundesliga due to their impressive performance in the first leg in Berlin, with Reis netting the only goal of the contest in the 57th minute.
Tim Walter’s side have actually won each of their last five matches in all competitions, including three of their last four games in front of their own supporters, and they will be confident of finishing the job on Monday to earn a spot in the 2022-23 Bundesliga campaign.
Hamburg suffered a 1-0 defeat to Hertha when the two teams last locked horns at Volksparkstadion in March 2018; a draw in the second leg would be enough for the second-tier outfit, but there has not been a stalemate between these two sides since August 2011.
Hertha, meanwhile, finished the regular Bundesliga season down in 16th position, picking up just 33 points from their 34 matches during a difficult campaign.
Felix Magath’s side have now lost each of their last three games, including their last two in the Bundesliga against Mainz and Borussia Dortmund, while they have won just once on their travels since October, which is an indication of the size of their task in this match.
The Old Lady, who are two-time German champions, have not played outside of the Bundesliga since the 2012-13 campaign, having been relegated from the top tier in 2011-12.
Hertha actually finished seventh and sixth in 2015-16 and 2016-17, but they were 14th last term, and their struggles this season mean that they are battling for their lives to avoid being relegated.
The Berlin outfit can take confidence from the fact that they have won two of their last three matches against Hamburg, but they are at a huge disadvantage on Monday having lost the first leg, while their away form in 2022 has been disappointing.
Hamburger SV Bundesliga Relegation Playoffs form:
Hamburger SV form (all competitions):
Hertha Berlin Bundesliga Relegation Playoffs form:
Hertha Berlin form (all competitions):
We say: Hamburger SV 2-1 Hertha Berlin
Hamburg were impressive in the first leg on Thursday, but the same cannot be said for Hertha, who are in bad form ahead of this match. The visitors are capable of turning the tie around, but we believe that Hamburg will again win on the night to secure a return to the Bundesliga courtesy of a 3-1 aggregate success.