Marx blow for Hertha

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HERTHA BERLIN coach Huub Stevens received another blow at the weekend with the news that midfielder Thorben Marx has torn cruciate ligaments in his knee.

The German Under-21 international was forced to leave the pitch at the Olympia Stadium after only eight minutes of Hertha's disastrous 3-2 defeat to Hannover on Saturday.

A post-match examination revealed the extent of Marx's injury, which will keep him on the sidelines for around six months as Hertha battle to leave the lower reaches of the Bundesliga table.

Former Schalke coach Stevens saw his team score their first goals of the season against Hannover before letting a 2-0 lead slip through their fingers.

The Dutchman received backing from general manager Dieter Hoeness despite the defeat, but he knows that he has to turn things around very quickly.

"I'm ready to fight and I expect my players to do exactly the same," Stevens said.