NEWS: 09.02.2018

"Keep our composure"

"Keep our composure"
Dieter Hecking answering the pre-match questions from the press.

Dieter Hecking spoke to the press ahead of Sunday’s trip to VfB Stuttgart. The head coach addressed the following:

The situation regarding personnel: We are still without Yann Sommer,Oscar Wendt,Ibrahima Traoré,Fabian Johnson,Tobias Strobl,László Bénes,Julio VillalbaandMamadou Doucouré. Raffael has recently returned to the pitch and is training with the team – whether he’ll be back in the squad for Sunday will be decided shortly. We’ve got another two days of training before then, so we’ll have to see how they go.

The two goalkeepers: I knew from day one we wouldn’t have any trouble. Tobi had a great game against Leipzig; it’s nice to see him in good form and good to know we can rely on him. We still all hope Yann Sommer will be back soon, but we won’t run the risk of another injury until he’s fully fit. We can therefore assume that Tobi will be in goal again this Sunday.

Patrick Herrmann’s current form: When an attacker isn’t scoring it’s never a positive for him, because they are measured on goal threat. Patrick does a lot of work for the team but he’s been lacking that clinical edge and bit of luck in front of goal. He’s had at least one big chance in all of our games since the winter break. Patrick is almost trying to force a goal – it would probably help him to be more composed in these situations.

The clinical edge in the team: A number of attacking players aside from Patrick Herrmann need to end their goal drought; we’ve had plenty chances of late, just haven’t converted them. The important thing is for us to remain calm – it’s not like the lads have forgotten how to score, you just have spells like this during the season where you need to work hard to earn that bit of luck, then there are spells where everything goes in. We’re in one of those difficult phases now and we need to continue putting our trust in the players, but we can’t guarantee it will improve. The team always want to improve and I hope they can make their own luck again on Sunday.

The next opponent: Stuttgart have lots of experience in players like Zieler, Genter, Gomez, Beck and Badstuber, plus a lot of young players who have now acclimatised to the Bundesliga. It’s not easy only having one game under Tayfun to analyse, but we know his teams are usually very organised and try to play football with good structure to the formation. They’ll probably play in a 4-2-3-1or a 4-4-2 system, just like against Wolfsburg, with mixed results there.