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FC St. Pauli play host to SC Paderborn 07 on Monday evening (20:30 CET). As usual, head coach Timo Schultz took time out on Sunday morning to answer questions from the Hamburg media and look ahead to the visit of the relegated Bundesliga outfit.

Timo Schultz on...

…the injury situation: "Everyone's available apart from the long-term absentees. Finn Ole Becker and James Lawrence are back in full training. With James it was just a question of managing his workload, while Finn Ole had a muscle problem. He's recovered now but hadn't trained for ten days before that. We'll have another chat today about whether it makes sense for him to run out against Paderborn on Monday evening. Tore Reginiussen and Philipp Ziereis are both in great nick. Tore did a superb job not only at Karlsruhe but also in the derby. And as captain, Ziere played a part in the run we had before. It's a 50-50 contest which may come down to my gut feeling."

…the chance to climb into the top half of the table: "I'm more interested in the three points than the top half of the table. We can widen the gap to the bottom if we get them. Our main focus remains on keeping the gap to the relegation play-off spot as large as possible. Whether we're ninth or 11th is not decisive."

…the balance between defence and attack: "That always depends on the opposition. At KSC, both teams kept five or six players behind the ball. It was clear that whoever made the first mistake would have a problem. Our style of play is geared to getting the ball forward and scoring goals. We've made big progress since the winter as far as our defensive cover is concerned. As soon as we get the ball, we set ourselves up to be less vulnerable to the counterattack. Finding the right balance there was our biggest talking point around the wintertime. But we still have tremendous quality in attack."

…Paderborn and coach Steffen Baumgart: "I'm sure they expected more before the season started and wanted to be challenging at the top. Instead, they're in mid-table like us, not so much because of bad performances but because the results haven't come. As a team, they operate with a very high aggressive press. It's sure to be an open game. Our attacking play has gone up another level since the winter, so we can look forward to a decent attacking game at the Millerntor. We want all three points, even though Paderborn are one of the better teams in the division. Steffen Baumgart is known for his love of attacking football. The way his teams play is how he is himself. Open, courageous and aggressive going forward."

…the favourites tag after the impressive return to form: "I'm not sure we need to keep manoeuvring ourselves into that role. But if you look at the table for the second half of the season, we're top. We've won a lot of games and deservedly so. I prefer being the fancied team going into a game rather than having to fight for every point like we did in the first half of the season. It's now more a question of holding the lads back and channelling the energy in the right direction. We're not short of confidence at the moment."


Photos: Witters