Jaroslov Drobny sets tone in Hamburg and Bremen’s derby of dysfunction | Raphael Honigstein

Once they were northern powerhouses but the shambolic defending in the 2-2 draw highlghted just how far the two sides have fallen

“Drobo, Drobo,” the khal – sorry, the call – went from the stands. Hamburg fans took care to acknowledge a former favourite, goalkeeper Jaroslav Drobny, on his return to the Volksparkstadion in the green and white of Werder Bremen. Before crossing the Nord-Derby divide this summer, the 37-year-old had spent the previous six years with die Rothosen, mostly left to his own devices by an array of bumbling defenders, forced to pick hundreds of balls out of his net with the dignified desolation of a man scouring piles of discarded betting slips for a forgotten winner.

On Saturday, though, Drobny was the enemy, a traitor for moving 128km down the A1 to the Weserstadion, and the “Drobo” chants were designed to hurt not please. Every nervous touch of the Czech stopper was accompanied by the gleeful, sarcastic repetition of his nickname by the home supporters. Markus Gisdol’s players knowingly targeted their former team-mate – “probably the worst footballing keeper of the league,” according to Welt – whenever he tried to kick the ball. The strategy paid off, instantly.

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