Matarazzo: "I sense a productive focus on the match"

The first Bundesliga match in Heidenheim – and TSG Hoffenheim will be the visitors. Pellegrino Matarazzo's team will travel to the Brenz to face promoted 1. FC Heidenheim on Saturday (15:30 CET / Live Ticker at 1,600 TSG fans will support the team in the Voith-Arena. Prior to the first competitive game against FCH, the head coach spoke about the opposition, his clear words following the Freiburg match and about his first meeting with Heidenheim coach Frank Schmidt.

Pellegrino Matarazzo on…

…the match in Heidenheim: "We have the same goal in every game. We want to reach our performance limits and get three points. A very heated atmosphere awaits us. The game is an absolute highlight of the club's history for the opposition. For us, it'll be about playing very intensively, being willing to cover ground and doing the basics. Then we'll be ready to play football and achieve our goal."

…his take on the opposition: "They'll perform full of energy. Their style of play is very intense, they also ran a lot in Wolfsburg. They're capable of moving the ball about but primarily score goals via wing play and set-pieces. We must ensure that we win the second balls and then find the right spaces."

…the preparations for the game against promoted Heidenheim: "Even though they were only promoted recently, there's a lot that we can analyse. We'll take the game in our stride. We know the opponent, we know the coach. We therefore have a lot of reference material, they haven't come out of nowhere and now reached the Bundesliga all of a sudden."

…his clear words after the Freiburg defeat: "A home defeat in the opening game of the season simply hurts. Clear words are very important, a critical approach is good for the team. This openness and clarity are important. It's about keeping the standards high. The team has taken it well. I sense a productive focus on the next match. When I talk about defending, I'm always referring to the whole team. There were different topics we had to follow up on. But the boys have taken a lot away from it."

… Heidenheim coach Frank Schmidt: "I faced Frank as a player. I was playing for the 1. FC Nürnberg second team and we won 6-1. (laughs) But he got promoted in the end and we didn't. Heidenheim are a great success story. They established themselves in the 2. Bundesliga for a very long time and I'm delighted for Frank and the club that they are now lining up in the Bundesliga."

… Wout Weghorst: "No decision has yet been taken on how long Wout can play for. He made a good impression yesterday, he is certainly an option for the starting line-up. That type of player is always an advantageous against compact opponents."

… Angelo Stiller: "There are very concrete talks but no transfer has been completed yet. Angelo has played from the start in recent weeks because he has deserved it. I go by performance, I want to win games. But it's also a fact that Angelo started only six games last season."

…his idea for the left flank: "Bülti's strengths are in attack so he is allowed to interpret the wide role offensively. That means we always have the option of shifting the game to one side. Bülti does that very well, he tracks back well and is very hard-working. He has done a good job in the first two competitive matches."

The personnel situation

Ozan Kabak is doubtful for the match on Saturday due to muscular problems. Andrej Kramarić has recently had back problems but is expected to return to team training this Thursday. Wout Weghorst is back in contention for this match. Dennis Geiger, Umut Tohumcu and Bambasé Conté are still sidelined.

Head-to-head record

TSG Hoffenheim and 1. FC Heidenheim are going head to head in a competitive match for the first time.

The opposition's form

1. FC Heidenheim lost the first Bundesliga match in their history 2-0 away to VfL Wolfsburg. A week earlier, coach Frank Schmidt's team had run out comfortable 8-0 victors away to Rostocker FC in the DFB-Pokal.


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