Hoppe bags a hat-trick as S04 beat Hoffenheim 4-0
FC Schalke 04 won their first home game of 2021 at home to TSG 1899 Hoffenheim on Saturday (9/1) 4-0. Amine Harit assisted all three of Matthew Hoppe’s goals and added one himself to round off the win.
Christian Gross made two changes to the team that lost at Hertha last weekend. Sead Kolasinac and Timo Becker replaced Bastian Oczipka and Omar Mascarell in the side, with the former making his second Schalke debut, his first appearance since 13th May 2017.
S04 start brightly
The Royal Blues began the game positively and enjoyed more of the ball early on in the VELTINS-Arena. Sead Kolasinac burst into the Hoffenheim box after just two minutes, however his shot was blocked by Kevin Vogt at the last moment.
Amine Harit was dangerous on the ball throughout the game, and won two free-kicks in the opening stages for Schalke. Both saw half-chances missed by Matthew Hoppe (6’) and Matija Nastasic (9’) respectively. Harit got into the box in the 14th minute and cut it back to Hoppe, who couldn’t direct his shot on target with the outside of his boot.
Fährmann saves, Hoppe scores
Hoffenheim came into the game more after 20 minutes and carved out several opportunities as they looked to take the lead. Ralf Fährmann, however, was on fine form in the first half especially. The first chance saw Ishak Belfodil played in behind, only for ‘Ralle’ to save with his feet (23’). Seven minutes later, Kramaric was denied again, before Nastasic blocked a Belfodil shot five minutes after that.
Schalke were dangerous once winning the ball back, although the final pass was often lacking. That was, however, until the 42nd minute. Sead Kolasinac headed the ball to Harit and the Moroccan slotted Hoppe in behind. The American remained calm and chipped the ball fantastically over the onrushing Baumann to score his first Bundesliga goal and send Schalke into the break 1-0 to the good.
Two more Harit assists for Hoppe
Hoffenheim came out of the blocks looking to find a quick equaliser and almost did just that. A deflected shot by Melayro Bogarde was well saved eventually by Fährmann with his foot (48’).
Schalke continued to play with confidence, though, and looked to create further chances to score. Baumann kept out an effort by Serdar from a narrow angle (54’), but was beaten for a second time shortly after. Benjamin Stambouli won the ball back in midfield and, via Timo Becker, Amine Harit burst forward and found the perfect pass for Hoppe. He rounded Baumann and converted to double S04’s lead.
The youngster wasn’t done yet though. Once again, Harit played him in behind and he again beat Baumann to score a third goal of the afternoon!
Harit scores following hat-trick of assists
With a comfortable lead intact, the Royal Blues enjoyed sat back a little, allowing TSG more possession, albeit without conceding any danger. Indeed, Harit went on to crown a faultless performance with a goal of his own. Substitute Bastian Oczipka fed the Moroccan in the box and the no.25 slotted clinically with a first-time finish into the bottom corner. It capped off a remarkable performance and 4-0 win for Schalke.
Frankfurt up next
Schalke will be hoping to build on this performance when they travel to Frankfurt for their next Bundesliga test a week on Sunday (17/1) at 18:00.