2-1: Hunt brace ensures crucial win over Hoffenheim
HSV fought hard to take three crucial points at home to third placed TSG Hoffenheim on Saturday afternoon: Both Hamburg goals in the 2-1 victory came from Aaron Hunt. The Rothosen are now unbeaten at home in nine games.
What another victory of wills for HSV! The Rothosen beat third-placed TSG Hoffenheim 2-1, in front of a massive crowd of 53,565 at the Volksparkstadion in Hamburg on Saturday afternoon (08.04). The home side began well putting last week’s Bayern conquerors under some early pressure. HSV deservedly broke the deadlock through Aaron Hunt who converted a direct free kick. The visitors equalised through a penalty by Kramaric after Ostrzolek had fouled Bicakcic inside the Hamburg box. HSV would not be denied and their hard work was finally rewarded on 75 minutes again through Hunt to secure all three points and 14th place in the Bundesliga table.
Hunt opens the scoring…
Gisdol made three changes to the team which lost away to Dortmund last time out. Regular keeper Adler was replaced by Mathenia between the posts while Ekdal was replaced by fit again Greek stalwart Papadopoulos. Both players were injured in Dortmund. Hunt got the nod over Gregoritsch in right midfield. It would be much-travelled Hunt who would break the deadlock on 25 minutes and lift the roof off the Volksparkstadion, netting with a superbly struck free kick from the edge of the TSG box after being brought down himself. That lead was well deserved after the home side had not allowed the dangerous visitors to settle on the ball, pinning them back in their own half.
Despite that fact Hoffenheim levelled only 10 minutes after Hunt’s opener. Hamburg defender Ostrzolek trod on the foot of TSG’s Bicakcic and match referee Felix Zwayer pointed to the penalty spot. The spot kick was duly dispatched by Kramaric beating Matheinia low down (35.). The Rothosen took that blow on the chin and continued to work hard. With Hunt and Kostic on the wings and Wood leading the line they caused constant problems for TSG. The whole team defended as a unit. The game was nicely poised at 1-1 as the half time whistle sounded.
… and nets the winner!
HSV seemed to have no interest in settling for a draw and made a bright start to the new half. Only to be caught cold on two occasions as Hoffenheim launched two lightning quick counter attacks which were not far off scoring at the end of them. The Rothosen stood up to them and continued to press high up the pitch, sometimes right up to the edge of the TSG box. That ploy of course resulted in more possession. Once again Gisdol’s side were unable to turn that advantage into clear cut chances.
That thankfully changed a quarter of an hour from the end, as a Holtby dream pass began the best HSV move of the game. Further involvement in the move by Wood and Hunt ended with the latter completing his brace and sending the home crowd into raptures of joy. To their credit, Hoffenheim were not too distressed and clearly believed in their own abilities. Hamburg hearts were in mouths on 88 minutes as a TSG effort struck an upright. The final whistle (finally) came and the Rothosen were now the proud owners of a fine nine game unbeaten home record, with the last four being victories. What a crucial win in such a tight situation in the Bundesliga table. The players did an extra long lap of honour much to the delight of the fans who celebrated with them for more than 20 minutes after the game.
The action continues next Sunday afternoon, as the Rothosen take the short trip up the Autobahn to Bremen. To the sold out Weserstadion in fact where old rivals Werder Bremen await them in a much-anticipated matchday 29 clash.
We can’t wait!
HSV: Mathenia - Diekmeier, Mavraj, Papadopoulos, Ostrzolek - Walace, Sakai - Hunt (90.+1 Janjicic), Holtby, Kostic (81. Gregoritsch) - Wood (86. Lasogga)
TSG 1899 Hoffenheim: Baumann - Süle, Vogt, B. Hübner - Bicakcic (77. Uth), Zuber - Rudy (46. Amiri) - Terrazzino (61. Rupp), Kramaric - Wagner
Goals: 1:0 Hunt (25.), 1:1 Kramaric (35., pen), 2:1 Hunt (75.)
Referee: Felix Zwayer (Berlin)
Booked: Kostic (40.), Walace (51.) , Papadopoulos (68.), Diekmeier (81.) / Rudy (32.), Kramaric (36.), Zuber (62.), Hübner (82.)