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Cologne v Hertha Berlin (Sun 5pm)
“We are a cup team,” grinned Peter Stöger on Thursday night. It was a piece of gallows humour from the Cologne boss who had just watched his side beat Arsenal 1-0 in the Europa League, only the third win in all competitions this season.
None of those have come in the Bundesliga with Stöger’s side taking just two points from 12 games. That form was apparent in their win on Thursday with Cologne looking very hesitant for long periods.
Convincing it certainly wasn’t but on the face of it, they’re playing Hertha at a good time. Pal Dardai’s side were knocked out of the Europa League on Thursday night as they were beaten 3-2 away at Athletic in the Basque country.
Hertha have had a miserable away record over the past year or so, taking just six points in their last 15 away games.
Yet Cologne are riddled with injuries. Peter Stöger already had seven first team regulars out before centre back Dominic Maroh was carried off injured against Arsenal. Fellow defender Fredrik Sörensen has to serve a yellow card suspension leaving Cologne very thin on the ground at the back.
There’s hope for them in that Hamburg managed to stay up after not winning any of their first 12 games last season. Whilst Hertha look much more capable of scoring than Cologne do at present, you shouldn’t expect many goals on Sunday.
- Correct score: Cologne 1, Hertha 1 (51-10, Unibet)
- First scorer: Guirassy (23-4, Unibet)
- Under 2.5 goals (17-25, Unibet)
Munich-born Raphael Honigstein writes about football for Germany’s biggest broadsheet, Süddeutsche Zeitung, the Guardian, ESPNFC and his tips appear here thanks to our football partner at MrFixitsTips, Unibet. They're making a big splash in the UK betting scene and if you join them today you can claim up to £30 in Welcome Bonuses when you deposit and place your first bet.