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The league campaign continues with a trip to VfL Osnabrück this Sunday (13:30 CET). Three points are the target, as head coach Timo Schultz was keen to point out at Friday morning's news conference.

Timo Schultz on...

…the injury situation: "Finn Ole Becker is back in full training, and we assume James Lawrence's calf will be OK, though we'll run a final check on that today and tomorrow. Simon Makienok went over on his ankle in training yesterday. I hope it looked worse than it is, but we won't get the final diagnosis until later today. Jannes Wieckhoff is slowly getting back to 100 per cent, and Christopher Buchtmann is almost ready to return to action but just has another two or three steps to take. Luca Zander has had no after-effects, it was just a cut between his eyes. I'll decide today or tomorrow whether he's 100 per cent ready mentally."

…the lessons from the Paderborn game: "We were able to filter out the reasons relatively quickly. Our positioning wasn't good, especially in the transitional phases on losing possession. After the winter we better in that respect to be honest. We also failed to make the most of our chances. We lacked precision on the day. It was clear we weren't performing well enough to win the game. We have to be on the limit all the time in terms of our intensity and desire. Intensity and the willingness to run come above all else. If we aren't at 100 per cent there, we'll have problems every game. We have to be wide awake from the off at Osnabrück."

…the significance of Sunday's game: "We've made progress to move away from the bottom. Looking at the table, three points would move us another step closer to the 40-point mark no matter who we're playing. That's our aim. If we concentrate on the next game and perform as we can, we know we're going to win matches. Things will go in the right direction then, as recent weeks have shown. If we play to our ability at Osnabrück, it's highly likely we'll come away with something."

…the change in fortunes for both teams: "Our points haul in the first half of the season was no better than Osnabrück's has been in recent weeks. We were on a downward spiral then. As far as we're concerned, I'm able to say fairly well what the reasons for that were, but you can't judge how it's been for Osnabrück looking from the outside. We were able to dig ourselves out of a hole, Osnabrück are just starting. We have something to say about that, though, and want to take all three points."

…the players on international duty: "Andreas Bornemann and our team manager, Jonas Wömmel, are the experts there. They're in constant contact with our doctors and the health authorities. I'm generally happy for every player who's with a national team. It's always an accolade. Specifically, we're talking about James Lawrence and Leart Paqarada. If you look at the games Paqarada will be involved in, they're genuine highlights (eds: Kosovo are playing Sweden and Spain in the World Cup qualifiers). We certainly don't want to ruin it for the lads, but it has to be in compliance with the Covid regulations and can't bring any disadvantages for us. You have to weigh things up, but we'll find a solution."


Photos: Witters