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Let's do it again!

FC Heidenheim are the visitors to the Millerntor on Saturday. In front of what is likely to be another sell-out crowd, Olaf Janßen's side will be looking to reap the rewards for their hard work in training following the defeat at Darmstadt. The most recent game between the two sides in Hamburg also gives cause for confidence...

What do you do when your engine starts to cough and splutter? You stop, you roll your sleeves up, and you get down to work. And that is what the Boys in Brown have a done after a below-par week that began with the cup exit at SC Paderborn and ended with a 3-0 defeat at SV Darmstadt. "The lads showed good energy in training," a satisfied Janßen said after Wednesday's session.

His players have had eight days to turn the anger over last week's events into positive energy for what the games to come. The task now is to transfer that energy onto the pitch on Saturday and in so doing elicit the famous Millerntor roar. In Heidenheim, however, they come up against a team bursting with desire to get the season back on track after a stuttering start. Frank Schmidt's side have just one win to their name so far, a 2-1 success over Erzgebirge Aue, set against defeats versus Braunschweig (2-0) and Duisburg (2-1).

Heidenheim may have hoped for a better start after a sixth-placed finish last term, but they are not likely to let it worry them. They have too much experience for that, as does their coach, who will celebrate ten years at the helm in September. And that's not all. Frank Schmidt has a positive record against the Boys in Brown, having come out on top in four of the six meetings between the two sides to date.

One of those two defeats came in Round 31 last season, when St. Pauli played host to Heidenheim at the Millerntor and blew the visitors away in the second half. The two sides had gone in goalless at the break but within 15 minutes of the restart it was 3-0 to the Boys in Brown. With that, the game was over and second-division survival all but assured. Janßen's charges will thus go into the game feeling confident, even if it's a whole new game tomorrow.

Yet it's not enough to feel confident, of course. "When we get a chance, we have to be ready to strike, and if we lose the ball, we have to defend with all the means at our disposal," said captain Bernd Nehrig, making clear that the points will only stay in Hamburg if everyone gives one hundred percent. Play and sing your hearts out is the motto on Saturday, then. Let's do it again!

Photo: Witters