Hamburg SV Vs. TSG Hoffenheim 12/07/12 Kamal’s Free German Bundesliga Soccer Pick and Preview
The German Bundesliga begins Week 16 of the fixture list with an interesting Friday match, as a struggling TSG Hoffenheim side travel to HSH Nordbank Arena to take on a Hamburg SV side looking for consistent form and eyeing a European place.
Hamburg comes into this match in a decent vein of form, as they’ve recorded a 2-2-1 record in their last five matches, as in this current span they’ve scored 5 goals while at the same time they’ve conceded 4 goals and kept 2 clean sheets. Coach Thorsten Fink must be credited for much of the turn around having reversed a tough start to the season and has managed to get the best out of players like forward Maximillian Beister, midfielder Tomas Rincon and captain and defender Heiko Westermann, the play of Beister has become all the more important in recent matches due to the injuries to midfielder Rafael Van der Vaart and forward Son Heung-Min and he’s responded with 2 goals and 1 assist in his last four matches.
Hoffenheim for their part have been struggling with dreadful form with a record of 0-1-4 in their last five matches and as a result have decided to sack Coach Markus Babbel with reserve team Coach Frank Kramer taking over in the interim, during this current span they’ve conceded 14 goals while only managing to core 6 goals. This is a club going through a tough time off the field as well with the ongoing health concerns around Boris Vukčević, however as difficult as it is they’ll need to refocus their mental state and effort on avoiding the relegation zone and get a couple of good results in this match and next week at home to Borussia Dortmund before the winter break. Key players for this match are midfielder Sejad Salihović, fullback Fabian Johnson and forward Kevin Volland, the play of Johnson is important for providing width and pace down the left side and opening up space for attacking players.
On the face of it this result looks pretty straightforward, however while I don’t have a stat to back this up usually in most sports a coaching change gets an immediate positive reaction from the players so I’ll go with Hoffenheim against the spread.