Berlin - Former Hamburg greats Franz Beckenbauer and Felix Magath both claimed they expect the Bundesliga's bottom club to be relegated this season.
Hamburg's 2-0 defeat at home to Wolfsburg last Saturday left the former German giants last in the table and four points from safety with six games left, having only avoided relegation last season by winning a play-off.
Beckenbauer, who captained Germany to their 1974 World Cup title and coached the Germans to their 1990 success in Italy, says he has given up all hope of Hamburg, whom he played for from 1980-82, avoiding the dreaded drop.
"I see no points which give cause for hope," he said on Tuesday.
"I'm heartbroken. I suffered a fair bit last season, but at least last year you could see, or at least suspect, that there was enough substance to escape relegation.
"But when I look at Hamburg now, I see absolutely no clues as to how this team can stay in the league.
"If they keep playing like they are now, then they will play in the second division."
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Hamburg are on their third coach this season after Mirko Slomka was sacked in September and Joe Zinnbauer was dismissed last month.
Caretaker coach Peter Knaebbel has lost both of his games in charge with his team failing to score a single goal.
"That is a sign when you are unsure, when everything is confused and uncertain," said Beckenbauer on the frequent switching of coaches.
Hamburg are at Werder Bremen on Sunday in the north German derby, but Magath, who scored the winning goal for Hamburg in the 1983 European Cup final, is also pessimistic that the club can avoid the drop.
"It's hard to see how we can get to safety after this latest defeat," said ex-Fulham coach Magath, who added relegation would be 'catastrophic' for the six-time German champions.
"What is urgently needed is the realisation that they are in a relegation battle.
"They looked already relegated against Wolfsburg, there was nothing coming from the team."
Hamburg finished that game with ten men after Johan Djourou was sent off and it later emerged the Swiss defender had traded blows with compatriot and midfielder Valon Behrami in the half-time dressing room.
Hamburg are low on morale and winless in their last eight games, taking just two points.
There is speculation that ex-Mainz coach Thomas Tuchel, who has a glowing reputation in Germany, will take over from Knaebbel if Hamburg stay up.
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