Borussia win last pre-season friendly 2-1 against Groningen
The Foals recorded a 2-1 win in their final friendly of pre-season against Dutch top-flight side FC Groningen.
Sporting director Max Eberl and head coach Marco Rose spoke to the media during a virtual press conference ahead of Wednesday’s DFB-Pokal round of 16 match against VfB Stuttgart (20:45 CET).
Head coach Marco Rose on…
…the personnel: None of our players are currently injured or carrying a knock. Everyone is fit and able to feature, which is great news. Rocco Reitz and Valentino Lazaro are back in team training. Tino hasn’t taken part in many sessions yet, but he could make the trip to Stuttgart. We will make a decision on that tomorrow morning.
…the importance of the DFB-Pokal game: The DFB-Pokal is a very intriguing competition because you can achieve a lot by winning relatively few games. You have a really good chance at winning the title in this competition. The single-game knockout format is part of the special appeal of the competition.
…analysis drawn from the Bundesliga meeting with Stuttgart: There are definitely a couple of things that we can work on, but the same is likely true for Stuttgart as well. We played well during the first half in Stuttgart. After the break, we were too passive and lacked precision up front. VfB upped the pressure and deservedly equalised. Stuttgart have a good squad with several strong players. Nicolas Gonzalez is one of those, but they have several others who are equally as good.
…Hannes Wolf’s development: I know that there has been some criticism for Hannes, undeservedly so for me. He’s only 21 years old and joined us having gained little match practice at Leipzig. At the beginning, he maybe wanted a bit too much too soon and didn’t make the best impression. However, he has been anything but disappointing. Hannes works hard and is developing well. It would be nice if those people showed more patience with him. I’m confident that he has a lot of potential to develop still and that he can become a key player for Borussia in the future.
Sporting director Max Eberl on…
…his one-month sabbatical: I had a good time. I’ve been doing my job for a long time now and the time had come to take a break. I spent the time out in the mountains where I feel at home, in an incredibly beautiful setting. Every victory for the team made it that bit more beautiful of course, and I was delighted that the boys were so successful. In short, I had a very good time, during which I was able to recharge my batteries. I'm grateful to the club and everyone around me for enabling me to take this time off and taking the work off my hands. Nevertheless, I also did some work. I was able to process the transfer of Kouadio Koné in peace and quiet. But I am happy to be back and I'm full of energy and looking forward to the game tomorrow.
…the good run of form during his time off: I was over the moon for the team after every game. I celebrated every goal, every point and every win from afar. I was there in heart and soul, following the games and cheering the boys on. I kept in constant contact with Marco and sent him congratulatory messages after each victory. After every win I also received a message or two saying that maybe I should extend my holiday a little longer - but the club didn't agree to that (laughs).
…tomorrow’s game in the DFB-Pokal: As we keep saying, the cup is a great opportunity to pick up some silverware. We want to play well tomorrow in Stuttgart and do our best to reach the quarter-finals.
…Hannes Wolf: The obligation to buy has been triggered now, so he is a Borussia Mönchengladbach player.