Hertha finally win at home
Raffael nets late on to see off Stuttgart
Last Updated: 26/08/11 10:00pm
Raffael: Netted late on to hand Hertha all three points
Hertha Berlin secured their first Bundesliga success on home soil in two years with a 1-0 victory over Stuttgart on Friday.
Since seeing off Hannover in August 2009, they have hit a serious slump which culminated in them spending a season in the second tier.
They were, however, able to get back to winning ways in their latest outing, with Raffael netting the only goal of the game late on at the Olympiastadion.
His effort was the last real action of the game, and it was he who had the first chance in the 12th minute, driving in a shot that Serdar Tasci did well to clear.
The home side continued to apply the pressure, and Raffael's cross was volleyed narrowly wide by Andreas Ottl.
That proved to be the cue for Stuttgart to come into the game, with Shinji Okazaki heading Tamas Hajnal's cross against the bar.
Buoyed by that, Stuttgart poured forward and Hajnal fizzed in a strike from 30 yards that had to be scrambled clear.
Patrick Ebert then saw his effort pushed into the sidenetting by Sven Ulreich, only for Hajnal to narrowly fail to find the target from the edge of the box just after the break.
The impressive Ebert was livid when his cross skipped across the six-yard box and was not touched by anyone, before Hajnal, fast becoming a one-man show, again took aim from distance.
Martin Harnik then looked to offer him support, slipping a shot just wide, while at the other end Ebert's free-kick was met by Gustavo Ramos who drew Ulreich into a flying save.
It looked as though time was running out for a goal but, with four minutes left on the clock, Ebert produced another fine centre that Raffael met with his head and planted into the bottom corner.