Nagelsmann’s XI to face La Liga side in friendly

TSG’s first game of the 2018/18 season will be a tough test. Julian Nagelsmann’s team will face SD Eibar on August 11th. The tie against the Spanish first division side will take place at 15:30 CEST in the WIRSOL-Rhein-Neckar-Arena. “Hoffe” fans can look forward to a fun-packed programme of events throughout the day to go alongside the friendly such as the opportunity to get the autographs of the likes of Julian Nagelsmann and his team.

The friendly sees the teams from the two smallest places in their respective leagues face one another. SD Eibar’s stadium seats 6,300 fans. “For a town of 27,000 inhabitants, the third tier would be completely normal,” said club president, Alexa Aranzabal, about Eibar. However, with some luck, resourcefulness, team spirit and support from the stands, the team marched from the third tier in 2014 to La Liga.

On the pitch, Eibar may be able to compete with Real Madrid and Barcelone but, financially speaking, the small club have had to fight tooth and nail to maintain first tier status. Though the club was debt-free, Eibar had to raise an additional 2 million Euros to gain a license for La Liga and the hurdle was overcome in creative circumstances. The money was raised through crowdfunding. However, fans buying shares for 50 Euros was still not enough. Former Liverpool and Real Madrid midfielder, Xabi Alonso, came to the aid of the club who he had started his career at aged 18. His father was also Eibar’s head coach for three years. “I played for Eibar for so long. It was my duty to help them out,” stated the former World Cup winner.

It should be a good game when Oliver Baumann, Kevin Vogt and co. take on the ninth best team in Spain last season. 

An overview of TSG Hoffenheim’s summer schedule:

1st July Start of training

8th-13th July TSG Training camp Garmisch

13th July (17:00 in Pöcking) TSG vs. SpVgg Unterhaching

21th July (17:00 in Eppingen) TSG vs. Queens Park Rangers

28th July (17:00 in Bruchsal) TSG vs. SC Heerenveen

29th July – 5th August TSG Training Camp Windischgarsten

11th August: First game of season at WIRSOL Rhein-Neckar-Arena; Friendly gegen SD Eibar

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