Eugen Polanski: "Get into the rhythm that we love"

It's impossible to imagine TSG without Eugen Polanski. Since his arrival in winter 2012/13, he has established himself more and more in the team. The Polish born player is a leader, even though he doesn't like the term. The defensive midfielder is always a prominent player in matches and can be seen as an extension of Markus Gisdol on the pitch. He spoke to us about the season opener against FC Genoa (Saturday 9th August, 15:00 CEST), his injury in pre-season, the training camp and the anticipation for the first competitive match.

Hallo Eugen. The first question is obviously about your ankle injury. How does it feel?

Eugen Polanski: It feels good again now. But I had damaged one and a half ligaments, so it was a little different than usual at the start. But the training sessions with the team on Tuesday and Wednesday proved to me that everything's okay.

You missed out a part of pre-season due to your injury…

Polanski: Injuries are always unfortunate, but for this to happen during pre-season is particularly annoying. After my injury, the whole team had two days off so I didn't miss much then. On the third day of my injury, I worked individually and did a lot of running, so I didn't make lose much fitness, but it's still annoying not to be with the team on the pitch. Our rehabilitation coach Otmar Rösch pushed me and Tarik [Elyounoussi] to work really hard after we returned from the training camp in Switzerland so we didn't have any time to even see what the rest of the team were doing in training.

Did you know in Speyer that something bad had happened?

Polanski: I didn't feel it, but I saw it. There was lots of swelling straightaway, so I knew that it had to be an ankle injury. It was my first ever ligament injury anyway and I was amazed that my ankle was still stable. That's why I was so focused on my return right from day three or four.

How would you evaluate TSG's pre-season so far in light of a goalscoring record of 45-0 and seven victories?

Polanski: We're not building ourselves up too much. It's only a small success for the team because we obviously want to be more stable than we were in the previous season. That's something that we've managed to do well so far, but we're in the preparation phase. That will still be the case even after the first competitive game in the cup and the Bundesliga opener against Augsburg a week later. Training in the first two, three weeks of the season will still be very intense.

You've spoken about the first competitive match against USC Paloma. Has the anticipation built up yet?

Polanski: Without a doubt. After pre-season you can look forward to when everything kicks off again and get into the rhythm that we footballers love.

But before that match, there's the season opener against Genoa on Saturday.

Polanski: It's a match we want to win. It's the first one back in front our fans in the stadium. We want to give them a little taste of what we have to offer in the season ahead. We have a strong squad and we're going to give our all. The spectators can look forward to an exciting and eventful match.

At the recent DFL Media Day, you showed just how much technique you have during the crossbar challenge. Were you surprised at yourself?

Polanski: No, I wasn't surprised. I'd much prefer if the ball went into the back of the net in league matches and not onto the crossbar.

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