Schalke's Hoppe nets hat-trick to snap 30-game winless run


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© Reuters. Bundesliga – Schalke 04 v TSG 1899 Hoffenheim

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GELSENKIRCHEN, Germany (Reuters) – Schalke 04’s teenager Matthew Hoppe became the first American to score a Bundesliga hat-trick when he carried his struggling side to a 4-0 victory over Hoffenheim on Saturday and snap the Royal Blues’ 30-game winless streak in the league.

Hoppe, who made his Bundesliga debut in November and scored three goals in only his fifth league match, opened his account when he chipped the ball over keeper Oliver Baumann after a superb pass by Amine Harit to finish off a quick break three minutes before halftime.

With Sead Kolasinac, on loan from Arsenal, back in the squad, Schalke scored again when Harit and Hoppe combined twice more for the 19-year-old to strike again in the 57th and 63rd minutes.

“I have no words for this day. I cannot really describe it,” a beaming Hoppe said, holding on to the match ball. “Just very happy.”

Morocco international Harit then turned scorer by drilling in their fourth goal after 80 minutes as Schalke climbed off the bottom of the table.

The California-born Hoppe joined Schalke in 2019 from the Barca Residency Academy in Arizona.

Schalke, whose previous league win was back in January 2020, were a defeat away from matching Tasmania Berlin’s Bundesliga record of 31 matches without a win from the 1965/66 season.

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