Salihovic calm after double

Salihovic twice scored from the penalty spot in Sunday’s demolition of the capital club, for whom he made five Bundesliga appearances before joining Hoffenheim in 2006.

The Olympiastadion contest was more or less over by the time Salihovic stroked home his second penalty on 39 minutes to give his side a 3-0 lead following John Brooks’ own-goal opener, before further strikes from Sven Schipplock and Sebastian Rudy completed Hertha’s humiliation.

Salihovic’s brace helped Hoffenheim to within a point of fourth place going into the second half of the season, but the Bosnia and Herzegovina international was in a humble mood after helping his side end 2014 on a high.

“It’s always very special for me to play in Berlin and I was obviously happy when the coach [Markus Gisdol] told me I would start,” he told the official Bundesliga website.

“I think we did a good job, and I have to say that scoring penalties isn’t the hardest thing to do.

“The first half of the season was pretty tiring for all of us so it’s good that we can have a break now.

“I don’t want to look too far ahead, though. We’ll see what we can achieve in the second half of the campaign.”

Salihovic’s team-mate Ermin Bicakcic echoed his sentiments in not getting too carried away.

“The whole team played well today, though, and I think we can be satisfied with first half of the season,” the defender said.

“We don’t want to think of particular targets for the campaign and distract ourselves.”

Defender Hajime Hosogai admitted Hertha deserved nothing from the game as they ended the year with a whimper in 13th place.

“We didn’t play well, which is why we deserved to lose,” the Japan international said.

“The own goal and the two penalties pretty much killed the game for us, and I think it was actually our worst game since I’ve been at Hertha.

“We have to make sure we come back stronger after the winter break.”

Hoffenheim travel to Augsburg on February 1 for their first fixture of 2015 after the traditional six-week winter break, while Hertha Berlin resume their Bundesliga season away at Werder Bremen.

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