Markus Gisdol: “We're difficult to predict”

The Bundesliga's busy schedule has kicked in! TSG 1899 Hoffenheim will take on SC Freiburg under the WIRSOL Rhein-Neckar-Arena floodlights on Tuesday at 20:00 CEST in the Baden Derby. “It's a very difficult match,” as manager Markus Gisdol put it.

Markus Gisdol on…

…the opponents

There's always a certain amount of feistiness in derbies, but as in Stuttgart, it will only be about getting the three points. We want to get a good result in what will be a very difficult match. SC Freiburg are good opponents and are really being undersold at the moment. They are well organised, flexible and versatile in attack, which makes it difficult to put your finger on them. I would prefer to be facing opponents who are easier to measure up. The boys from Freiburg have been doing well. They could easily have seven or eight points. I'm anxious to see how the match plays out tomorrow.

…the squad

It's extremely likely that the squad will be the same as in the last match in Stuttgart. Sead Salihovic will be unavailable again. His wound has become inflamed so he'll need more time out. Kevin Volland is on the road to recovery. The game time has definitely done him some good and his back is holding out. The midweek fixtures will obviously put a lot of strain on Kevin, but I'm confident that he'll start to play more and more matches.

…the current situation at TSG

Our main principles haven't changed at all, but it's normal that you continue to develop and go through certain phases. The team have grown tactically – we have become more versatile and that makes us tough opponents to predict. It's important to have versatility and it's worked well for us. Competition for places is tougher this year – you don't know who's going to play where. It's obviously an advantage when you have players who can play in different positions. We're not so easy to judge as we were last year.

Past meetings:

Six goals, three sending-offs and no winner – what a match TSG's last home-game against SC Freiburg was! 24,000 spectators were there to witness the spectacle that ended in a 3-3 draw. The teams first met in the second division in 2007, when Freiburg won 3-2. The head-to-head record from the ten Bundesliga meetings is relatively even. SCF have recorded three wins, TSG two and there have been five draws.

The opponents:

Freiburg are still waiting for their first win of the season. The team are currently in 14th place in the table after defeats to Frankfurt and Dortmund and draws to Gladbach and Hertha, with the latter ending with a frustrating last-minute equaliser for the Berlin club. In spite of collecting only two points in four matches, there is no reason to underestimate Christian Streich's team, who currently find themselves in the final third of the table. The team have put in good performances, but they have yet to be rewarded. Manager Streich has also been given a headache in terms of striker selection: Both Admir Mehmedi and Dani Schahin are unavailable.

The key battles:

SC Freiburg's strengths lie in attack. Even though no recognised striker has scored a goal and attacking talents Mehmedi and Schahin are missing from the squad, SCF still take an attacking approach. The comparison to last season backs that up: They have averaged 13 shots per game this season, while that figure was 11 in 2013/14. Christian Streich's team are not only more adventurous in attack, they're also more compact in defence, allowing fewer shots on average. TSG will be wise to deny their opponents any space and keep it tight at the back.

Match facts and statistics »

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