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(Kopie 1)

Not there yet, but the belief is growing

Pre Match Report

08.04.18

Not there yet, but the belief is growing

The way that the win against Schalke had affected the mood was clear to see a day after.

On the day after the wild 3-2 victory over Schalke 04 at the Volkparkstadion witnessed by 54,137 fans on Saturday evening, the crucial result was discussed in depth once more. Firstly the coaching staff sat down for some video analysis ahead of Sunday’s training session, before around 100 fans from the official HSV fanclub did so outside the stadium after the session was over as well. The fan contingent had the opportunity to give their thoughts on the game with the team. One particular opinion stood out above the rest: the positive performances in the last two games were topped against Schalke. Nothing has been secured yet, but the belief is starting to grow again.

HSV.de takes another look back at the game against the Royal Blues, gives an update on the squad and previews the forthcoming matchday.

(Kopie 2)

Caption 1: The celebrations were huge. “We’re still keeping things in perspective,” said Titz on his side’s mentality.

On the game: All 94 minutes in the Volksparkstadion were like a rollercoaster ride, with a very happy ending for the Rothosen - a result that they more than deserved. They had 18 shots on target to Schalke’s seven, eight corners to Schalke’s one and a total of 58% possession. Christian Titz knew how important the win was, and not just for the points: “The most important thing for us was that the win gives us the belief that what we’ve been practicing can translate itself into results. If you can do it against one of the top teams in the Bundesliga as well, then the confidence grows yet more.”

It was the end of a long 131 day wait for such a result. The fact that the win does nothing yet to secure any sort of security is not lost on everyone at the club, however. “We know that we have to keep winning and keep playing like that for anything to be possible. But we believe we can do it,” said Titz, who by no means is looking to dampen the positive feeling of the fans. “I had the feeling that the whole stadium was rocking and that the players were able to use that to their advantage. I think it will help us a lot if they’re able to keep up that kind of support over the coming weeks. Within the team we’re still keeping things in perspective. That doesn’t mean we’re not feeling good, rather that we’re looking to take that feeling forward with us into the coming weeks.”

(Kopie 3)

Caption 2: Kyriakos Papadopoulos, pictured here talking to Christian Titz, picked up his tenth yellow card on the weekend and will have to sit out next week’s game against Hoffenheim.

On the squad: Kyriakos Papadopoulos put in a strong performance covering for the suspended Gideon Jung on the weekend, but now he must also miss out due to suspension in next week’s game against Hoffenheim. “He played very well right from the kick-off,” praised his head coach after the game. It’s possible that Jung could step in to take back the second centre back role against Hoffenheim. “I’m not making any decisions yet. We will always base our choices on what we’ve seen in that week of training. Stephan Ambrosius also played well in the week before Schalke game, but Rick did extremely well in training too,” as Titz outlined again that no player will ever be handed a spot in the starting side.

There is also positive news to report on Nicolai Müller. The midfielder took part in team training for the first time since his ACL injury on Sunday. “We made sure that he only took part in a limited amount of drills to limit the contact with other players. We have to wait and see how his body and obviously how his knee will react,” explained Titz and made immediately clear that an impending return should not be expected just yet. “We have to take things week by week. It is not easy to recover from a serious injury,” he continued.

(Kopie 4)

Caption 3: Christian Titz is already devising a plan for the game against Hoffenheim with his coaching staff.

The outlook going forward:  After the win against Schalke and the draw between Köln and Mainz, HSV managed to climb out of last place in the table and move within five points of Mainz in 16th. This could quickly change on the next matchday, however, as HSV will play an in-form Hoffenheim side, while Mainz have a home game against the struggling Freiburg. “We are only focusing on ourselves,” said Titz. “It doesn’t do anything for us to look at what the others are doing. We want to forge our own path. Hoffenheim will be a very tough opponent. We need to have a very good week of training and then we shall see what happens,” said the coach, who along with his staff have already begun dissecting next weekend’s opponents. “We already have an idea of how we will try to approach the game.” In order to put it into practice, two training sessions are on the program for Tuesday. Until then, there’s a bit more time to enjoy a first win in 131 days.