Dennis Geiger on the road to recovery: “I’m ahead of schedule!”

Dennis Geiger picked up a tendon injury in his right thigh during TSG Hoffenheim’s 3-0 home win in match-week 26. “Hoffe” therefore had to do without him for the last eight games of the season. The 19-year-old midfielder spoke to about his motivation, returning to the team, rehabilitation and swapping his kit number.

Dennis, we haven’t seen you on the pitch for almost three months, so we’ll kick off with probably the most important question: How are you?

Dennis Geiger: “Much better, thanks. I’m no longer in pain when walking normally. The latest MRI looks very encouraging but I still need to be careful. I reckon that I’ll be able to start light training again in one or two weeks.”

Your recovery is going to plan, then?

Geiger: “Even better than expected; I’m ahead of schedule. It’s still difficult to say when I’ll be back on the pitch. That depends on how I’m feeling and how the muscle and tendon react. So I need to be prudent. Of course I hope to be back with the team towards the end of pre-season training.

“Out for the season”. When you heard that, how difficult was it for you to take?

Geiger: “Very. I was having a really good season and really wanted to help the team finish off the campaign. The second injury was actually tougher to take. Initially it looked like I’d be able to play again before the Bundesliga finished, however the diagnosis eventually read: Out of training.”

What is the biggest thing motivating you to get back on the pitch?

Geiger: “I’ve been out for three months now. I can’t express how tough it is, watching the team in training whilst you’re incapacitated. I simply want to be back in the team as quickly as possible, to help them in games. I just can’t wait. The fact that we’re playing in the Champions League next year is naturally another motivation.”

Much like Lukas Rupp, your summer break will primarily be spent in rehabilitation. Is that all you’ll be doing or will you have the opportunity for a little break at some point?

Geiger: “I have one week off, in which I’m going on holiday. I haven’t booked anything yet, so I’ll decide where to go at short notice.”

You've swapped your kit number. From 32 to 8 – what’s the thinking behind this?

Geiger: “I was asked if I wanted no. 8. (laughs) It used to be my favourite number, but apart from that it doesn’t have any major significance.”

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