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A busy fixture list also means a busy media agenda for head coach Jos Luhukay. Ahead of Saturday's trip to Karlsruher SC (13:00 CET), the Dutchman took questions on the game at a virtual news conference, speaking about...

…the short time to prepare: "We did some recovery work and just light training. We also analysed the data from Wednesday evening with our fitness coaches. Working from there, we have to ensure the players we pick are ready to go, both mentally and physically."

…learnings from the Heidenheim game: "It was a real team performance. The lads were very solid and showed lots of passion and willingness to work hard, not just for themselves but also for their teammates. We didn't allow Heidenheim to play their game in the second half, to the credit of the whole team. We need to show the same willingness and passion again tomorrow if we want to win the game."

…his personnel: "Leo Østigård will return to the side, but there's a question mark over Ryo Miyaichi. He had problems in the second half after a challenge with [Niklas] Dorsch. It's going to be very tight for tomorrow, so we'll need every player over the next few games."

…the lack of goals in the last two games: "We're surprised by that as well. I was joking about it with Waldemar Sobota because he scored so many goals in his training group. There were no defenders in training, of course, and in a game you have to act quickly under pressure, but it's true, we had more chances in the first half against Darmstadt as well, and if we'd scored a couple, the game could have taken a different turn."

…the missing fans: "I can't get used to it myself. We miss our fans. There've been lots of occasions in the past when the fans have given us extra energy, which we miss, of course. But we're not the only ones, that's generally the case these days. We have to be professional about it, though. We coaches are more hearable, but the players are so focused you still can't always reach them the way you'd like."

…KSC: "They have players with the necessary experience, robustness and resolve in the tackle, and they're a threat from set pieces. They have a good axis, a solid striker in Philipp Hofmann plus bags of experience in Jerome Gondorf, David Pisot and Daniel Gordon. We have to be at 100 per cent to get a good result."

…a win at KSC: "I don't think one win will be enough to keep us up. We'd still be relying on results elsewhere, but we always aim to focus on our own performance."


Photo: Witters