Final friendly of pre-season ends 2-2 against Anderlecht

HSV put on a good display as part of the Volksparkfest 2019, with Aaron Hunt and Lukas Hinterseer grabbing goals for the hosts. Pieter Gerkens and Antoine Colassin managed to level things up for the Belgian champions in the second half.

Nothing could split Hamburger SV and RSC Anderlecht at the Volksparkfest, as the two sides played out an entertaining 2-2 draw. After an even opening to the game, the home side put their noses in front with a free-kick from newly re-elected captain Aaron Hunt just on the stroke of half-time. Lukas Hinterseer doubled the Rothosen’s lead right at the start of the second period, but the Belgians came back strongly and were rewarded with goals from Pieter Gerkens and the equaliser from Antoine Colassin in the 78th minute.

Even first half

With 19,137 attendees packed into the Volksparkstadion on a sunny Saturday afternoon the conditions could hardly have been better for the final friendly of pre-season against one of Europe’s top teams in RSC Anderlecht. The start of the game lived up to its billing, with both teams looking to play on the front foot and find their wide players early. The guests had the better of the opening exchanges, with Alexis Saelemaekers unable to find a way past new signing Daniel Heuer Fernandes, playing for the first time in front of the HSV fans after his switch from SV Darmstadt. Fellow new man Lukas Hinterseer enjoyed the first chance of the game for his new employers, letting fly from range, only to see his strike fly wide of the far post. After the busy opening period, both teams tried to exert themselves on proceedings, with neither side successful in their efforts, leading to few chances at either end. Not a huge surprise then that it was a set piece that broke the deadlock, with Vincent Kompany fouling Bakery Jatta right on the edge of the Anderlecht area. Aaron Hunt, newly re-elected as captain of the team for the second season in a row, stepped up and curled a peach of a free kick into the top left-hand corner, giving the HSV fans a reason to cheer for the first time in the game. In the six subsequent minutes until the break, there was no real goalmouth action, with Dieter Hecking’s men going into half-time with their noses in front.

Jam-packed second half

The Rothosen roared out of the blocks in the second half, catching their opponents off guard to double their lead, as Narey raced down the right-hand side before retaining his composure to lay back into the path of Hinterseer, who made no mistake to open his account at the Volksparkstadion. Despite the setback the team clad all in purple looked to make the most of any opportunities they had after turning the ball over, only for the final touch to be lacking. It fell to ex-HSV man Vincent Kompany just after the hour mark to really threaten the Hamburg goal for the first time in the match, and substitute Julian Pollersbeck had to be alert to tip the Belgian’s fierce header over the bar. Pollersbeck was helpless soon after, as Pieter Gerkens met Thierry Lutonda’s pinpoint cross and powered his header past the Hamburg ‘keeper, giving his side just over 20 minutes to find an equaliser. The Rothosen, looking splendid in their new home kit, were unperturbed by their lead being cut in half, controlling possession and remaining calm in defence, however, an individual error at the back enabled the guests to score the much sought-after equaliser. In the closing stages both sides pushed for the winner without success, so that the friendly between HSV and RSC Anderlecht ended at two apiece.

Thoughts on the game

Head coach Dieter Hecking: We played well for large parts of the game. Particularly in the first half we were very well organised, and should have made the most of the times when we won the ball back in dangerous positions. Nevertheless we go in front thanks to a great free kick. In the phase just after our second goal we did a lot right once again. Both of the goals we conceded came from nothing, we need to get rid of those mistakes. But overall there are lots of things I’m satisfied with. Now we need to work on the details so that we can win a game like that in the future.

Captain Aaron Hunt: You can see that we‘ve still got a bit to work on. You could see with one or two of the players that we’re a bit tired after the intensive training schedule. We played against a good team today who are confident on the ball, we didn’t give anything away at the back and with a bit more precision up front could have scored a few more goals. But that’s normal at this stage of pre-season. The freshness will come back in the next few weeks and then I’ll be sure that we’ll be more precise in the final third. All in all we’re feeling good going into the new season.

This is how the teams lined up:

HSV: Heuer Fernandes (46‘ Pollersbeck) – Gyamerah (72‘ Wintzheimer), Papadopoulos (72‘ David), van Drongelen, Leibold - Fein - Narey, Hunt (62‘ Kittel), Dudziak, Jatta (76’ Samperio) - Hinterseer (62’ Wood)

RSC Anderlecht: Didillon - Cobbaut (46‘ Kayembe), Sandler (31‘ Bornauw), Kompany (76‘ Sa), Lutonda - Zulj (46‘ Gerkens), Amuzu (46‘ Colassin), Deawele (76’ Kums) - Nasri (31’ Ait El Hadj), Vlap, Saelemaekers (46’ Sardella)

Goals: 1:0 Hunt (39‘), 2:0 Hinterseer (46‘), 2:1 Gerkens (67‘), 2:2 Colassin (78‘)

Referee: Florian Heft