Our match prediction:
Schalke head into Sunday’s football match against Hertha Berlin following a hard-fought 1-0 win over Nice in the opening match of their Europa League campaign. Abdul Rahman Baba scored a late winner against the Ligue 1 outfit and die Knappen will be looking to build on the triumph when they face the capital club at Olympiastadion Berlin. Schalke aim to escape the relegation zone, but beating Hertha on the road is easier said than done. Pal Dardai’s men have been impressive at the start of the season and they will be looking to build on back-to-back wins over Freiburg and Ingolstadt when they square off against Schalke on Matchday 3. Over the years Hertha have turned their Olympiastadion into a real fortress and that is the main reason why we predict the hosts are going to pick up all three points from Sunday’s showdown against Markus Weinzierl's charges.
Highligted Player (Pekarik):
Peter Pekarik is a Slovakian defender born on 30th October 1986 in Zilina, and has so far made over 60 appearances for the country’s national team. The full-back spent his early career at boyhood club Zilina, and his big break came in January 2009, when he joined German giants Wolfsburg. Pekarik in turn helped his new side lift their first ever Bundesliga trophy in his debut season, but eventually lost his place in the starting line-up and decided to join Hertha after a season-long loan at Kayserispor. The right-sided defender has since featured in over 70 league matches for the Olympiastadion outfit, who enjoyed a great deal of success during the 2015/2016 campaign. Pekarik has been one of Slovakia’s most consistent performers since making his debut in 2006, and he started three games for the team at the 2010 World Cup. Operating alongside Martin Skrtel, Kornel Salata and Tomas Hubocan, Pekarik was a part of the team that secured their place at the Euro 2016 finals.
Highlighted Team (Schalke 04):
Schalke 04 are a professional football club founded in 1904. Die Knappen (The Miners) compete in German Bundesliga and they have won seven domestic titles. Schalke have clinched five German Cup trophies as well, while lifting the UEFA Cup title in 1997. The German club defeated Italian side Inter on penalties in the title game and that was the last time the final of the competition was played in a two-legged format. Schalke 04 play their home matches at Veltins-Arena, the stadium that has been the home of the team since 2001. The capacity of Veltins-Arena is 62,271. It is well known that Borussia Dortmund are Schalke’s main rivals and the Ruhy neighbours face each other in the Revierderby. The likes of Klaus Fichtel (477), Norbert Nigbur (355), Rolf Russmann (304), Klaus Fischer (295), Olaf Thon (295) and Herbert Lutkebohmert (286) are the players with most appearances for die Knappen. The colour of Schalke’s home kit is blue.