Seoane: “We have to stay defensively compact”

Head coach Gerardo Seoane answered journalists’ questions at the press conference ahead of the Foals’ Bundesliga match against Borussia Dortmund on Saturday (15:30 CEST). Here are his most important quotes.

Head coach Gerardo Seoane on...

...the squad situation: Christoph Kramer is still ill and will probably not be in the squad. Tony Jantschke has a minor muscle problem, and he will also be missing on Saturday. Additionally, Grant-Leon Ranos has picked up an ankle injury and will be unavailable. Manu Koné is progressing well, but he needs to build up his fitness. I think we’ll see him on the pitch again this season.

...Ko Itakura in defensive midfield: Ko gave us solidity in that position in Wolfsburg. We’re happy that we’ve got versatile players like him in the squad. That means we can deploy players with different profiles to influence the game. For me as a coach too, it’s a good way of adapting my game plan. The system with two defensive midfielders worked well in Wolfsburg, so it’s definitely an option for the coming matches too.

...the opponents: The fact that BVB played in the Champions League on Wednesday evening might be a positive for us. I’m working on the assumption though that Dortmund will make one or two changes to their team on Saturday. They have a lot of quality in their ranks which allows them to make these changes. The opponent’s structure and style of play are a lot more important for us to look at however. Dortmund’s style is well-known, so we’ve got an idea of the approach they’ll take at the weekend.

...the game plan against BVB: We can’t offer BVB too much space in behind. That’s not the only thing though. Dortmund play with a lot of movement all over the pitch, so we’ll need to cover for each other well and communicate physically and verbally in order to close the gaps for them to run into. We also have to win the individual battles in the important areas of the pitch, and also press at the right moments, so we can deny the opponent the chance to play dangerous passes in behind.

...the possibility of successive victories: Of course we’re always hungry and give everything to win two games in a row. Unfortunately, we haven’t been doing that recently. What we can do is work on our performances and how we adapt during games. We have to stay defensively compact and limit the opponent’s attacks in order to concede fewer goals and be able to counter quickly ourselves. We also want to impose our style of play on the opponents when we’re in possession.

...the lessons from the 4-2 defeat in the reverse fixture: Of course we’ll watch the reverse fixture again, but it’s not fully comparable. There’ll be different and injured players on both teams. We can maybe take a few things from it, but the development of both sides has changed a lot since then. We’ll continue our defensive approach from Wolfsburg in a way. That’s why it’ll be a very different game on Saturday than it was in Dortmund.

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