Acquah and Polanski: Two new midfield motors

TSG have brought in two new defensive midfielders over the winter transfer period – Eugen Polanski and Afriyie Acquah. Two athletic players, who can help bring the necessary stability to Hoffenheim's defence.

Eugen Polanski is not the kind of player you want to come up against in midfield: merciless, tough and intelligent. These skills have led to him being one-time captain of the Germany U21 side and a fan favourite for Poland at the 2012 European Championships after deciding to play for the country at senior level.

The 26-year-old is the quiet type and lets his football do the talking. He is always at the service of his club. “I'm a team player,” he said with conviction. He sees himself as “a part of the bigger picture at Hoffenheim”. Polanski continued: “Like everyone else, I have to do my part on the pitch.” Away from the game, Polanski is also a husband and a father of three children. “It requires a lot of organisation at home,“ he explained, before saying: “I like spending quality time with my family.”

Afriyie Acquah: “I'm a hard worker”

Polanski is an all-rounder in central midfield – he brings structure to the defence, plugs gaps, intercepts passes, plays smart forward balls and he doesn't have a bad shot technique either.

This is how Acquah describes himself: “I'm a hard worker and I enjoy it. I always give my all on the pitch – right up until the last minute. My athletic and technical ability helps me assert myself.”

Before joining Hoffenheim, the 21-year-old played in Italy's Serie A. “Football in Italy is shaped greatly by tactics. I was there from the age of 17 and so I'm well schooled in that department,” explained the Ghanaian. He was recently on loan at Parma from Palermo, making 13 appearances. He was a follower of the Bundesliga in Italy: “When I was given the opportunity to come here, I just had to seize it.”

Just like Polanski, he feels well integrated in the Kraichgau in a short space of time. “I've settled in well at Hoffenheim. Everyone in the team is speaking to me. It makes it all a lot easier,” said Acquah. On Wednesday, Polanski's sixth day with TSG, the Pole was already talking about the daily routine. “The team have accepted me well and I've got my bearings. I already know the important things.”

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