It goes without saying that the mood at the club following the dismal 0-3 defeat in Cologne at the weekend is, well… pretty tense to put it lightly. It is not our intention to mention any of the much-publicised negative records because such things are counter productive. They are of no use to a side desperate for success in the Bundesliga. Coach Markus Gisdol told us the day after the game: “Calm, continuity and stability – they are the three most important things in a hostile environment.” Everyone knows that recent results have been anything but good. There were also some positive aspects. The coach again: “In Cologne we played well for long periods. Both sides cancelled each other out for 60 minutes.”
Three important things
Markus Gisdol wants to give his team direction and says that three things are crucial to achieving that goal: Calm, continuity and stability.
Bobby Wood apologises
There followed two key incidents which according to the Rothosen were decisive. A clear foul by Cologne’s Marco Höger was only punished with a stern talking to from the ref instead of a second booking which many believe would have been more appropriate. Sixty seconds later there was more drama as HSV striker Bobby Wood was shown a straight red card for elbowing Dominique Heintz in the side in an off the ball incident (57.). The visitors down to ten men and a minute later fell a goal behind as Modeste opened the scoring for the home side.
“What he did was of course not acceptable and we will be dealing with the matter internally”, added Gisdol. Bobby Wood apologised to the team on the morning after the game: “He knows he made a mistake and that cannot reverse what happened yesterday, but it was a good reaction from him”, knows Gisdol. The latest defeat was thoroughly analysed the following morning. After a lengthy video analysis there were individual chats with the players. Gisdol: “We cannot allow ourselves to be influenced by hectic things going on around the club. We have to remain focused on the three above-named important things. That is the basis for everything.” He is of course d4rawing on his experience made at former Bundesliga club Hoffenheim, who as he took over, required 10 points from only seven games to stay in the top flight, and that with a team which had until then had a nightmare season. Gisdol: “In such situations you need stable points of focus. I see it as my job to give the team exactly that."
Cleber and Diekmeier return
Calm, continuity and stability – are the things being worked upon and will be really needed as HSV’s next two opponents are Dortmund and Hoffenheim. Tough encounters to say the least. Gisdol: “Although we face tough games we will still have our chances. After that there will be opposition closer to our end of the table.” The Rothosen boss has his fingers crossed that his list of walking wounded will shorten this week.
The good news is that regular defenders Cleber Reis and Dennis Diekmeier return to the team. It is still a bit of a mystery just when Emir Spahic and Albin Ekdal will resume full first team training: “We can only monitor them every day”, explained the coach. The most important thing is the level of effort being put in by everyone and of course we must not forget those three important things – calm, continuity and stability. That is the way to gradually move forward.