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Preview: Borussia Monchengladbach vs. Hertha Berlin - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Bundesliga clash between Borussia Monchengladbach and Hertha Berlin, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Borussia Monchengladbach take on Hertha Berlin in the Bundesliga on Saturday, with the hosts likely to be in celebratory mood having qualified for the knockout stages of the Champions League for the first time in the club's history on Wednesday.

The visitors' spirits would have been similarly lifted by their 3-1 derby day win over Union Berlin last weekend.


Match preview

Borussia Monchengladbach manager Marco Rose pictured in November 2020© Reuters

Indeed, despite losing 2-0 to Real Madrid, Inter Milan's draw against Shakhtar Donetsk meant that Gladbach had enough points on the board to progress to the knockout stages of Europe's elite competition.

Attention must now return to the Bundesliga, where only one win in four games has seen Marco Rose's side slide to seventh in the table. If Gladbach are to have aspirations of competing in the Champions League again next season, that form must improve as soon as possible.

Gladbach were slightly disappointing in the 2-2 draw at Freiburg last weekend, failing to turn possession into many clear cut chances despite taking the lead when Breel Embolo capped a wonderful one-touch move, with only four passes from back to front opening up Freiburg's defence. Embolo has missed several gilt-edged chances this season, but he was clearly in no mood to miss another.

However, the hosts rallied either side of half time to take the lead, with Philipp Lienhart's close range header backed up by Vincenzo Grifo's penalty after Nicolas Hofler's driving run bought a dangling leg. Alassane Plea earned Rose's side a point with a sensational strike from distance which sailed into the top corner, with the French forward's technique as clean as a whistle.

The Foals must ensure they do not rest on their laurels from midweek, with returning to winning ways domestically a necessity in order to start climbing up the table.

Hertha Berlin's Peter Pekarik scores against Union Berlin in the Bundesliga on December 4, 2020© Reuters

After winning just once since the opening matchday, Hertha's poor form looked set to continue when Taiwo Awoniyi, on loan from Liverpool, put Union Berlin ahead at the Olympiastadion after fine work by Marcus Ingvartsen played the striker in behind.

However, Union Berlin's early aggression crossed the line when Robert Andrich's dangerously high foot connected with Lucas Tousart's head, with the midfielder deservedly sent off as a result. The visitors held on until half time but Hertha stayed patient, with full-back Peter Pekarik levelling proceedings by pouncing on Matheus Cunha's rebounded effort.

Substitute Krzysztof Piatek proved to be the difference maker, with the former AC Milan striker's deflected effort edging Hertha ahead before a brilliantly instinctive finish from the edge of the area sealed a 3-1 victory for a crucial three points.

Bruno Labbadia must ensure his players start their visit to Gladbach much quicker than how they performed when the amount of players between both sides was equal last weekend, otherwise Hertha could find themselves more than one nil down early on against a dangerous Gladbach side.

Borussia Monchengladbach Bundesliga form: WWLDWD
Borussia Monchengladbach form (all competitions): DWWLDL

Hertha Berlin Bundesliga form: LDWLDW


Team News

Borussia Monchengladbach's Jonas Hofmann pictured on November 4, 2018© Reuters

Gladbach are likely to remain without Jonas Hofmann (torn muscle), Ramy Bensebaini (coronavirus) and Tony Jantschke (knee) for the visit of Hertha.

Rose could make changes from the side which actually performed very poorly in the defeat to Real Madrid in midweek, with Denis Zakaria set to return to the starting XI for his third successive league start as he continues to recover from his lengthy knee injury.

Hertha will remain without summer signing Jhon Cordoba until the New Year, with the former FC Koln striker sustaining ligament damage last month.

Otherwise, Labbadia looks to have a clean bill of health to choose from, with Piatek set to return to the starting XI after his derby day heroics on the last matchday.

Borussia Monchengladbach possible starting lineup:
Sommer; Lainer, Ginter, Elvedi, Ginter; Neuhaus, Zakaria; Wolf, Stindl, Thuram; Embolo

Hertha Berlin possible starting lineup:
Schwolow; Pekarik, Boyata, Torunarigha, Plattenhardt; Stark, Guendouzi; Lukebakio, Darida, Cunha; Pekarik


SM words green background

We say: Borussia Monchengladbach 2-2 Hertha Berlin

We can envisage an open encounter at Borussia Park, with the hosts likely to be buoyed by progressing in the Champions League in midweek.

However, Hertha should be fresher having not played since last Friday, with the likes of Dodi Lukebakio, Cunha and Piatek ready to damage Gladbach in transition.


Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting that both teams will score (BTTS - yes) in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.BTTS Yes:data


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Hertha Berlin's Peter Pekarik scores against Union Berlin in the Bundesliga on December 4, 2020
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