Heidenheim fact file
Wednesday, 23. August 2017, 18:36 Uhr
Ahead of the first international break of the 2017/2018 season St. Pauli play host to FC Heidenheim on Saturday (kick-off: 1300 CET). As usual, we've run the rule over our next opponents and put together a few facts and figures.
Heidenheim's opening game against Erzgebirge Aue on 30 July fell victim to the weather. The rain at the Voith Arena was so heavy that referee Benjamin Brand was forced to take the players off the pitch before eventually abandoning the game. The match was quickly rescheduled for 9 August and an 81st minute goal from Marcel Titsch-Rivero gave FCH a 2-1 victory over the Violets.
Smooth running in the DFB Cup
Whereas the Boys in Brown went out of the DFB Cup at the first hurdle after a 2-1 defeat at SC Paderborn, Heidenheim eased into the second round with a 4-0 win at newly promoted third-division outfit SpVgg Unterhaching. Defender Timo Beermann proved to be the match-winner, registering the all-important opening goal in the 44th minute before doubling his side's lead on 74. Olaf Janssen's team will need to stay alert, as the 1.88m centre-back scored both of his goals form a corner.
Heidenheim registered 36 attempts on goal in their first three outings, an average of 12 per game. Only three teams have managed fewer – FC Kaiserslautern (33), Eintracht Braunschweig (31) and SV Sandhausen (30). Of these 36 attempts, just ten were on target, with only Kaiserslautern (7) testing the opposition keeper on fewer occasions. In terms of shooting accuracy, Braunschweig lead the way (17 of 31 attempts on target), with the Boys in Brown (18 of 40) third behind SV Darmstadt 98 (17 of 37).
Down the middle
Frank Schmidt's team have hit a measly 18 crosses so far this team, the third lowest figure in the league after SV Sandhausen (13) and Union Berlin (14). This would appear to imply that they prefer to attack the opposition goal down the middle. By comparison, the Boys in Brown sit in lower mid-table on 28 crosses. Top of the ranking are VfL Bochum on 49.
More touches than minutes
Just two players have registered more touches than minutes played in the first three games – Heidenheim central defenders Timo Beermann and Mathias Wittek. Both have played all 270 minutes, though Wittek (332 touches) leads Beermann (273) by some way in this ranking. For us, Bernd Nehrig (216) and Marc Hornschuh (205) have had the most touches.
As everyone will know, Olaf Janssen took charge of the Boys in Brown two months ago. Heidenheim coach Frank Schmidt, in contrast, is the league's longest-serving manager. Since being appointed on 17 September 2007 he has guided the club from the fourth-tier Oberliga Baden-Württemberg to Bundesliga 2. Schmidt, whose contract runs until the summer of 2020, will celebrate ten years in the job when his side travel to VfL Bochum on 17 September. Braunschweig boss Torsten Lieberknecht (9 years, 3 months, 11 days) is second place when it comes to longevity, with Dresden coach Uwe Neuhaus (2 years, 1 month, 23 days) third.