With an idiosyncratic transfer policy, Hertha BSC has not only surprised the scene since the club pumped an incredible 374 million euros into the market, largely without effect. Even after the exit of investor Lars Windhorst, which was accompanied by many negative circumstances and a corresponding loss of image, the relegated company made a name for itself with some strange personal details. Hertha presented the Karlsruhe keeper Marius Gersbeck four weeks ago as the first signing for the new season, although the club actually has no need for that position. Finally, with Alexander Schwolow, Oliver Christensen, Tjark Ernst, Robert Kwasigroch and Tim Goller, there are five other goalkeepers in the relegated squad.
But in Gersbeck, those responsible around President Kay Bernstein and sports director Benjamin Weber saw a professional who embodies the proclaimed Berlin way like no other and would be able to have a say in the topic of “direct promotion”. After all, the native of Berlin was once a fan of the Olympic Stadium as a child and played for the club until 2019.
Gersbeck’s performance therefore took place with all sorts of local color and fanfare. “He’s Hertha through and through and has developed into one of the best goalkeepers in the league in Karlsruhe,” explained sporting director Weber. “I left the curve as a boy, as a little boy – and come back as a seasoned second division player,” announced Gersbeck himself. And in a Hertha post on Saturday, the club quoted the new man between the posts as follows: “I’m trying to myself to be brought in and recommended in the best possible way,” said the EUR 300,000 entry there. “Since I’m one of the older guys and have already gained some experience, I also want to take on responsibility. I dare to speak my mind both on and off the field.”
Around 24 hours later, however, the goalkeeper, who was scheduled to be number one, and Hertha, were overwhelmed by the unctuous words. Because Gersbeck is said to have been involved in a wild brawl on Sunday night, he left the training camp in Zell am See/Austria.
But that doesn’t protect the 28-year-old professional from serious consequences. There are investigations into physical harm against him, as the Salzburg state police announced. According to the authorities, there was a dispute in the town of Zell am See early on Sunday morning, which escalated into a physical altercation. A 28-year-old injured a 22-year-old. This had to be treated in the hospital. The suspect was questioned by the police about the facts, but was then able to leave the office, it said.
As BILD reports, the seriously injured local is said to have lost at least one tooth and suffered a broken nose as a result of Gersbeck’s nocturnal attack. The injured person is currently being treated in the Tauern Clinic in Zell am See and, according to the police, is not yet ready for questioning. According to BILD, Gersbeck got into a fight with the locals after visiting a pub, and the situation is said to have escalated on the street.
In a statement on Monday afternoon, Hertha commented on the serious incidents and the nightly exit not approved by the club: “Marius Gersbeck left the training camp yesterday. The sporting management and management will now evaluate the situation internally, taking into account the ongoing investigations. On Sunday, the traditional club announced in a first statement: “Due to the ongoing investigations, we will not comment further on this matter and ask for your understanding.”
Gersbeck will probably go down in history as the goalkeeper with the shortest tenure at Hertha – at least in terms of sport, a future for the powerful goalie is almost unimaginable. And the club itself had recently imposed merciless sanctions for much less serious offenses: Rune Jarstein, one of Gersbeck’s predecessors in the Herthaner box, was fired without notice last year after an alleged insult against goalkeeping coach Andreas Menger. The Norwegian, meanwhile, sued for reinstatement, and the parties will meet in court on August 17.
In this respect, Gersbeck’s freak out came at an absolutely inopportune time. In twelve days, Hertha has to play Fortuna Düsseldorf at the start of the season in the second division – and until then they have to solve several problems. Because he is actually planned as a departure, keeper Schwolow didn’t even travel to the training camp – but now he could still be urgently needed.
In any case, that personality would fit in perfectly with Hertha’s wild transfer behavior of the recent past: Schwolow had switched from Freiburg to the Spree in 2020 for an incredible seven million euros, but he always had a few wobbles in his game and was at Schalke 04 last season – the others Relegated – loaned. Now his wavy career at the capital club could possibly be continued.