Hertha BSC – Bayer Leverkusen: Organized Hertha Put Listless Leverkusen To The Sword (2-0)
Leverkusen faded after a bright start, as Krzysztof Piątek put in a superb showing to snap Hertha Berlin’s three-game losing streak and secure the win on the season’s penultimate match day.
Tactical analysis and match report by Manasvin Andra.
With Champions League football hanging in the balance, this was a gameLeverkusen absolutely needed to win. Coming into this game, they held a one point lead over Borussia Mönchengladbach, who were up against Paderborn at the same time.
Leverkusen manager Peter Bosz made only one change from the side that beat Köln in their previous game, with Jonathan Tah replacing Sven Bender in defense. The rest of the team bore a familiar look, as striker Kevin Volland was supported by the trio of Leon Bailey, Kai Havertz and Moussa Diaby. Behind them sat the pivot of Charles Aránguiz and Julian Baumgartlinger, who protected a defense of Wendell, Edmond Tapsoba, Tah and Aleksandar Dragović.
Bruno Labbadia’s appointment saw Hertha Berlin stave off relegation, though three successive defeats meant the honeymoon period for the new coach came to an abrupt end. The manager needed a win to ensure that Hertha’s season ended on a good note, and made two changes to the side that lost to Freiburg.
Goalkeeper Rune Jarstein was protected by a defense of Peter Pekarík, Jordan Torunarigha, Dedryck Boyata and Marvin Plattenhardt. Niklas Stark slotted in as the holding midfielder ahead of the defense, with Matheus Cunha, Marko Grujić, Vladimír Darida and Dodi Lukebakio selected to support center-forward Krzysztof Piątek.
Leverkusen make a decent start . . .