Hertha Berlin will be looking to take a big step towards safety when they travel to face already-relegated Schalke in the Bundesliga on Wednesday at 5pm (UK time).
Pal Dardai’s side are currently 14th, level on points with Arminia Bielefeld in the relegation play-off spot, but have this as their game in hand.
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Where to watch Schalke vs Hertha Berlin on TV:
- UK: BT Sport 3
- US: ESPN+
Scoreline prediction: Schalke 0-2 Hertha Berlin
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Schalke vs Hertha Berlin build-up, previous line-ups & injury news:
Schalke are relegated and destined to finish bottom of the table, some 16 points behind the team above them with three games left to play, so for the Gelsenkirchen club it’s about ending their Bundesliga tenure with their heads held high. Unfortunately, there hasn’t been much for Schalke to feel good about in recent weeks, as they go into this game having lost their last three.
However, they can still be an influence on the relegation battle, with two of their final three games this season coming against teams who are still in danger of joining them in 2. Bundesliga.
The first of those two opponents are Hertha Berlin who, for some time, looked as though they would be saying goodbye to the Bundesliga, leaving local rivals Union Berlin as the capital’s only representative in the top flight next season. But they have found decent form at the key moment.
Hertha are unbeaten in their past six Bundesliga games, a run that moved them out of the relegation play-off space to their current home of 14th. That run has seen them beat Bayer Leverkusen and Freiburg, with the latter coming despite Hertha playing three games in seven days to catch up.
- Schalke (vs Hoffenheim): Fahrmann; Oczipka, Becker, Mustafi; Schopf, Flick, Serdar, Kolasinac; Harit; Uth*, Huntelaar.
- Hertha Berlin (vs Arminia Bielefeld): Schwolow; Klunter, Dardai, Stark; Mittelstadt*, Ascacibar, Tousart, Zeefuik; Cunha*; Cordoba, Piatek.
Mark Uth is suspended for Schalke after receiving his fifth yellow card of the season last time out, joining Nabil Bentaleb, Hamza Mendyl, Nassim Boujellab, Omar Mascarell and William on the sidelines. Meanwhile, Matheus Cunha and Maximilian Mittelstadt picked up injuries against Arminia Bielefeld and miss out for Hertha. Matteo Guendouzi, Rune Jarstein and Luca Netz are also absent.
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Player to watch: Alexander Schwolow (Hertha Berlin)
One of the reasons for Hertha’s recent unbeaten run, especially in the past two games, has been their defence, keeping two clean sheets against Freiburg (3-0) and Arminia Bielefeld (0-0). That doesn’t necessarily mean they have been perfect defensively though, with goalkeeper Alexander Schwolow playing his part.
The 28-year-old has been fairly busy in the past two games, making four saves against Freiburg and six against Arminia Bielefeld, preserving what could be a crucial point in the latter. And even when Hertha’s defence was breached in the previous game against Mainz, a 1-1 draw, it was Schwolow who kept Dardai’s side in the game, making eight saves, more than he has made in any other Bundesliga match this season.
Bundesliga 2020/21 recent form:
- Schalke: LLLWL
- Hertha Berlin: DWDDD
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