Hoffenheim won't be travelling anywhere new on Saturday. SG Aumund-Vegesack will welcome TSG to the so-called “Pitch 11” near to SV Werder Bremen's Weserstadion. The fourth-division side finished third in the Bremen league last season, but manager Gisdol doesn't think that Hoffenheim's label of clear favourites is relevant. “We will show our opponents respect. We have to do that otherwise we won't be able to deliver a top-class performance.”
The TSG management haven't left anything to chance and have left no stone unturned trying to collate some video material of their opponents. Gisdol has been able to analyse three complete matches in order to get familiar with the hosts' characteristics. “We'll be facing a tactically disciplined side,” said Gisdol. “On top of that, Aumund-Vegesack know how to get stuck in. They certainly won't give us a warm welcome. They can play dirty.” Nevertheless, Gisdol is not running scared. “We are exactly where we wanted to be in terms of our preparation.”
Recent friendly successes
Pre-season and the fact that TSG have picked up two convincing wins in their last three friendlies (3-0 against APOEL Nicosia and 4-1 against Olympiacos), as well as a respectable 0-0 draw with Athletic Bilbao, will put the manager in a confident mood ahead of the match against the underdogs.
The Kraichgau side will travel up north without Sejad Salihovic though. The Bosnian has undergone some training after his knee problems but Saturday comes around too soon for an appearance. Sali will rejoin team training over the next week and should be available again for the opening Bundesliga game of the 2013/14 season against 1. FC Nürnberg a week on Saturday.