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BOYS IN BROWN OUT TO EXTEND UNBEATEN RUN

The league campaign resumes at MSV Duisburg on Monday evening (kick-off: 2030 CET). Just over two weeks after the last-gasp 3-1 home win over SV Sandhausen (3:1), the Boys in Brown are aiming to build on recent performances to keep their unbeaten run going and cement themselves in the top six.

"It's good to wind down for a bit now," said head coach Markus Kauczinski after the 3-1 defeat of Sandhausen a fortnight ago, his mind on the forthcoming international break. The Boys in Brown did drop down a gear, but not for long. After the 5-0 friendly win at Altona 93, they were able to recharge their batteries on a rare weekend off before entering a week of high-intensity preparations for the trip to MSV.

In Duisburg, Markus Kauczinski's side are up against opponents who, apart from progressing to the second round of the DFB Cup with a 1-0 win at TuS Dassendorf, made a dreadful start to the season. After taking just two points from the first eight games, head coach Ilja Gruev was shown the door and quickly replaced by Torsten Lieberknecht. With the former Braunschweig boss on the touchline, Duisburg secured their first three-point haul of the season at the ninth attempt, a surprising, yet not undeserved 2-1 victory at league leaders Cologne.

"We are warned. No one here is underestimating Duisburg. We have a tough job ahead of us," said midfielder Christopher Buchtmann in the run-up to the game at MSV, who after two months anchored at the bottom have handed the wooden spoon to FC Ingolstadt. And having finally chalked up their first notch in the wins column on the road, the Zebras are now aiming to add another one at home. MSV have had little to celebrate in front of their own fans for quite some time. All four home games this term have ended in defeat and their last win on home turf dates back to May, a 2-0 success over Boys in Brown on the final day of last season.

To ensure there is no repeat on Monday evening, Kauczinski's side are aiming to build on their recent run of form that has seen them take ten points from a possible 12, a return that saw them enter the international break on a high. The St. Pauli boss will be happy if the points keep coming, but he is still striving to achieve more consistency in his team's performances and a better balance between defence and attack. If his players can put that into practice on Monday evening, they have a very good chance of holding their own at MSV and extending their run.

 

Photos: Witters

 

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