Have you ever heard the story about the Harappas, the civilization in the Indus valley? No? I am not too surprised. More or less unknown, they prospered throughout centuries. This is the case of Vladimir Darida, but for a few seasons and in Germany. After having done an amazing job at SC Freiburg, both cleaning up in front of their (at times shambolic) defence and creating and scoring goals to help the club stay in Bundesliga a few seasons more than they perhaps should have, he is now doing the exact same job at Hertha Berlin.
Die Alte Dame, the old german lady, the team that never really achieved anything as one of the only teams from a capital without a substainable record in the top flight. It is also the team that has surprised the most the current season; it was expected to go the same way as last season for them, one of their worst in Bundesliga ever. Since manager Pal Dardai finished his job as coach of the Hungarian national team, his team in Bundesliga has somehow prospered, with Kalou and sensationally even Ibisevic scoring when they feel it's necessary. Among all these relatively unknown players, Vladimir Darida, Hertha's engine, is what drives the team forward.
The agile Czech is not a traditional playmaker. He is also one of Hertha's most important defensive players, as his amazing stamina allows him to run up and down the pitch, creating chances and cleaning up other's mistakes. This is backed up by the actual statistics, as he is the Hertha player to run the most almost every game. His contribution helps the team, defensively and in attack, to prosper and Hertha can hopefully, with Vladimir Darida's help, finally achieve something. Something that would be the first thing achieved at Hertha since Lucien Favre finished in the top 7 with them a few years back. Vladimir Darida might be the way forward, the player to build a new team around, the chosen one.
This is where it all begins. Our resident analysts study the unrecognised players and examine the matches that are of interest across Europe.