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Karlsruher SC are the visitors to the Millerntor this Saturday (kick-off: 1300 CET). At today's news conference on the eve of the game, head coach Jos Luhukay spoke about...

…the Frankfurt game: "Every player, and especially the team, can take a lot of confidence from it. We've analysed the game in detail, and I think we've been left with a positive feeling. We played into the opposition half for nearly 70 minutes. We were assured on the ball and our combination play was good, we just didn't get the second goal we were looking for in the end. Though the first 15 minutes were unfortunate from our point of view, we showed morale and mental strength. Our defending, counterattacking and gegenpressing were good as well."

…Saturday's opponents: "I'm expecting a well organised Karlsruhe side who'll put their defensive strength and counterattacking game on show, which is why it's so important we defend well to ensure we aren't vulnerable on the break. The players are well prepared and eager to carry on where they left off against Frankfurt, just with a decent result this time."

…set pieces: "Our main task at the back is to assume responsibility, starting with the keeper. He has to reach a clear understanding with the guys in front of him and everyone has to stick to what's been agreed, otherwise you end up in disarray and players are left unmarked. The keeper shares the responsibility for ensuring everyone has a position and keeps to it. That wasn't the case against Darmstadt and Heidenheim recently. And yes, we don't have as many tall players as other teams do, but then you have to compensate for that with robustness and composure. Set pieces can decide games, but we aren't making enough of them up front. There've been too many set pieces where we weren't efficient enough."

…Korbinian Müller: "We wanted to show our gratitude by playing him in the cup and give him a chance to find some rhythm and show what he can do away from the training ground. He's only been with us a few weeks and has shown a really positive attitude, both in terms of his quality as a goalkeeper and his character as a person."

…Christian Conteh: "He's got a muscle injury. We'll only know how bad it is when he's had a scan."

…James Lawrence: "He's still working on a customised routine and we hope he'll be able to resume full training next week, but he's still feeling pain at certain intensity levels. We need to be patient and hope he can make some progress over the next few days."

…Henk Veerman: "He'll return to the squad for the first time tomorrow. Henk is a weapon you can launch in the second half. When you look at the situation in the last two league games against Darmstadt and Heidenheim, we were the better side. We had two to four really good opportunities to open the scoring and win the game in both matches, and Henk is someone who doesn't need much to know where the goal is and score. I'm delighted he's making such good progress. He's ready and can't wait to get a game. He isn't fit enough for 90 minutes, of course, but if he does come on, he'll do all he can to have a positive impact on the result."

…the players out through injury: "A total of ten players are ruled out for the Karlsruhe game: Svend Brodersen, Christopher Avevor, Aurel Loubongo, Yiyoung Park, Niklas Hoffmann, Luis Coordes, James Lawrence, Christopher Buchtmann, Christian Conteh and Marc Hornschuh."


Photo: Witters



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