Kai Herdling: "Work well defensively"

After making the German Cup quarterfinal on Tuesday, Hoffenheim's perspective returns to the Bundesliga. On Saturday, December 7th at 15:30 CET, TSG are visitors to Europa League participants Eintracht Frankfurt. There they face a side that are “difficult to judge,” said Markus Gisdol in Friday afternoon's press conference.

"In the two cup competitions they have shown a different side to their game. Eintracht have not quite hit their form in the league,” said the Hoffenheim manager. Nevertheless, his team should keep the focus on themselves and look to execute their own game plan. What this is exactly, was something Gisdol kept to himself.

In terms of selection though, things almost look perfect for TSG. Fabian Johnson, Sejad Salihovic and Andreas Beck (who had picked up a knock to his patellar tendon) all returned to team training on Friday. Stefan Thesker is the only absentee due to a ligament tear in his right ankle.

Grahl in goal for Frankfurt game

Markus Gisdol has decided on his goalkeeper. Jens Grahl will start against Frankfurt having won the trust of his manager after the cup game on Tuesday evening. “We want to take the positive energy out of the Schalke game. Jens did his job well and was very present,” explained Gisdol about the decision.

Grahl's competitive nature shone through and even Kai Herdling, who played with Grahl in Hoffenheim's U23 side, agreed: “Jens is crazy about positivity. He always wants to win, that much was clear in Schalke from how he reacted after the game.” The team played really well in any case. “It was important that we saw we could work well defensively. Even after they scored, we stayed calm.”

In terms of the other positions, Markus Gisdol left us to ponder who might play where. “There is a possibility that we won't change the team. We have yet to come to a final decision.” There is still every reason to be excited about just how Hoffenheim will line up on Saturday in the Commerzbank Arena. One thing is for sure though, Jens Grahl will celebrate his Bundesliga debut.

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