Sejad Salihovic: "I just want to say thank you"

It’s the end of an era. He wore the TSG colours for nine years, but now Sejad Salihovic is leaving Hoffenheim in search of a new challenge. spoke to ‘Sali’ about his time at TSG.

You’ve been at TSG for nine years, experienced so much, and now you are saying farewell. How do you feel looking back on your time at the club?

Sejad Salihovic: It was an exciting and especially emotional time for me here at TSG. We celebrated a lot of success and the developments that have happened over the past few years are fantastic. It’s amazing that I have been able to experience it all from the beginning. But the time came for me to decide if I wanted to do something different and I felt I wanted to try something new. It wasn’t an easy decision to make but it has been coming for a long time. There are times in life when you have to make calls like this. I would like to try something new, and perhaps I will come back one day – I can definitely picture myself doing that.

How have you personally experienced the development of the fan culture at TSG?

Salihovic: It’s difficult to put into words. What has happened here at TSG is unbelievable and fantastic. Back then, in the Regionalliga in the Dietmar-Hopp-Stadion, we had around 250 spectators. Now we play in a great stadium in front of amazing fans that have always supported the team and me too. For that I want just want to say thank you.

What moments are particularly memorable for you at TSG?

Salihovic: There have obviously been many great moments over the last few years. The most special was obviously the promotion. But also the last match of the season against Dortmund two years ago, and the following relegation play-offs against Kaiserslautern, are all games I will never forget.

Will you maintain a connection with TSG, Kraichgau, the region and the fans?

Salihovic: Of course. That bond will always remain. Such a long and intensive time won’t just disappear in a day. I have been here so many years and have made so many friends. My parents live here. I will miss everything, including my family and friends. But I am certain that we won’t be seeing the last of each other.

Is there anybody you would like to thank in particular?

Salihovic: I want to thank the club for the wonderful time that I have had here. I would also like to thank Dietmar Hopp for the support and trust that he has always had in this club and me.

Your new adventure is in China. What are your expectations?

Salihovic: I can’t say exactly at this moment. It’s something completely different, completely new. I made the decision to take this risk and I am very excited about it. I have taken a look at everything there. I want to have fun playing football there and I will give everything to help the club celebrate some success.

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