Heurelho Gomes: "We must be united"

It hasn't taken long for Heurelho Gomes to become a fans favourite in Hoffenheim. The goalkeeper has been convincing on the pitch and off it, his open manner and positive attitude have been welcomed. Ahead of the game in Fürth on Saturday, 9th March at 15.30 CET, he spoke about his move to the club, the importance of mental strength and the experience that he wants to share with his teammates.

Heurelho, Hoffenheim instead of London – did you have time to explain the move to your family?

Unfortunately not, things moved too quickly. My wife and children are still living in London but come to visit for a few days as often as they can. Not seeing my family everyday is the price that I willingly pay in order to be back on the pitch. At the moment, football is the focus. Of course I would like to spend more time with my family but the football, the success at Hoffenheim is the priority.

For over a year and a half you didn't make an appearance for Tottenham. How hard was that?

I missed it every single day. It wasn't pleasant. Ten years ago, I was playing twice a week, in the league and on the international stage. Then suddenly, I only used to come in to train. Now I can give it my all in both training and on the pitch. I will fight for TSG right up until the last minute of the season.

You've never been in a relegation fight before in your career have you?

That's right. At this stage of the season, I've never been so low down in the table with a team before. At the start of my first season with Tottenham we were near the bottom but that's not really the same. With my experience though, I would say it's not all about the football and the technical side of things. It's important to remind yourself every single day that you are going to give everything for the club. We have a lot of young players here and I want to share my experience with them. We must work together and show character.

How important is it to be mentally strong in this situation?

It's really important. This part of the game is more important than the football side at the moment. Our performances against Stuttgart and Augsburg were disappointing and, as part of the team, I am included in that. We win and lose together but I believe in myself, my teammates and the club.

What are you expecting for the Fürth game?

This is the absolute key game for us. It's all about three really important points. We can't just put in a good performance like we did against Bayern either, we have to win. In the training sessions, I can see in the lads faces that we are going to fight for the victory against Fürth. Even before the game against Bayern, we got together as a team. We made it plain what we needed to do and it helped.

You were captain against Bayern as a result of your experience. How much responsibility are you taking on?

I am no saviour but I do want to help. It's give and take. I have to have the feeling that my help is desired as well and I have noticed that. It's why I'm happy to take on responsibility. We all want to improve and call on the best of our abilities. That's why it's important we stick together. I don't have to be as close to them as a family member but we must be united and take the weight of each other's shoulders. We have to be a team on the pitch. If a player loses the ball, we've got to help and encourage them.

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