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"THE DRIVE WE NORMALLY GET FROM THE FANS WILL HAVE TO COME FROM EACH INDIVIDUAL PLAYER"

In the run-up to the restart against Nürnberg on Sunday (13:30 CET), head coach Jos Luhukay answered questions from the media at a virtual news conference, speaking about…

…the injury situation: "Christopher Buchtmann, Philipp Ziereis and Christian Conteh are ruled out. They're the injuries we've had to deal with so far."

…being in quarantine at the hotel: "We've had an excellent week. I think we've come even closer together as a team and the atmosphere in the squad is really good. The lads have worked exceptionally well."

…preparing to play without crowds: "We staged a training game against each other at the Millerntor to get a feel for the situation. Playing without fans on our ground was a vital impression for all of us."

…his negative run against Nürnberg coach Jens Keller: "I'm out to change that on Sunday, of course, though we haven't faced each other that often."

…the preparations for the game: "Every day is unaccustomed for us. It's not normal. We wear masks to protect each other even when we're moving around the hotel. At the team meetings we keep our distance and take all the precautions. Our training is organised to be in full compliance with the rules, whether it's at the Kollau or the Millerntor."

…training in an empty stadium: "I could see the players were happy right away when they ran out and were able to train on that fantastic pitch, but we'll miss the fans and the atmosphere, of course. The drive we normally get from the fans will have to come from each individual player."

…the ability to prepare specifically for this game: "We resumed full training last Thursday and have had ten days to prepare. It's been a lot of work for the whole squad but also for the team behind the players. Everyone's worked very hard to give us the best possible preparation."

…the ability to make five substitutions: "It puts us in a good position for the remaining games. We have little time to prepare and a very busy schedule. We don't know how well the players can keep going to the end. The ability to make five changes can influence the tactical play as well."

…tolerance of mistakes: "We're very honest and direct in training but not negative. We try to help the players and team departments learn from mistakes. I think we've done that very well. We've tried to address good moments and not so good moments, which I believe has gone down well with the players."

…goal celebrations: "We've had two meetings where we've gone through the various measures and rules with the players. We've also covered goal celebrations. I hope we score lots of goals, but then we have to accept we can't show our delight the way we usually do."

…the end of quarantine: "We all go home on Sunday and then we'll have to wait and see what happens in the next few weeks."

…FC Nürnberg: "They aren't where you'd expect them to be in the table with their quality. They're a very experienced side with lots of players who have played in the first division. Up front they're unpredictable because Frey, Dovedan, Hack and Behrens rotate a lot and are dangerous in front of goal. I think they're much better than their league position suggests. Our sole objective is to keep all three points at the Millerntor."

 

Photos: Witters

 

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