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Schultz: "None of the lads can surprise me anymore"

The Boys in Brown ended their pre-season training camp on a successful note on Wednesday with a 2-1 win over SV Meppen. Head coach Timo Schultz took stock of the preceding nine days after the game, speaking about...

…his footballing takeaways: "We've progressed in terms of the substance of our work. Almost all the players are fit now. I think Finn Ole Becker will be able to resume training next week as well, so I'm really very satisfied."

…a possible starting XI: "I'm happy to admit I have a formation in mind – but that consists of 14 to 15 outfield players who give me a really good feeling and not just ten. We have to see how things fit together, depending on who we're playing. I'm in good spirits, though, in view of the progress we've made in pre-season. It's looking really good going into our acid test on Sunday and I'm sure we'll come out punching at Elversberg and Bochum."

…surprises at training camp: "None of the lads can surprise anymore, I know them too well for that. But if I take the game against Meppen, for example, I think Jannes Wieckhoff did really well. He was involved in so many things going forward. I also think older players such as Philipp Ziereis, Daniel Buballa and Christopher Avevor are becoming more assured and have made incredible progress compared with the first few sessions. Some of the lads hadn't played football for nearly a year."

…the new signings: "Afeez is the component we were lacking. He's gives us stability and never shirks a challenge, on the ground or in the air, and he also plays an exquisite pass. If we can get him on the right track and he understands what we want to do as a team, he'll be a top-class signing in time. Maximilian Dittgen is a lot of fun, simply because of the positive mood he brings to the pitch and the way he tries to get in behind the defence. In general, the new recruits are very stable and have played a full part in pre-season to date. I'm looking forward to Sunday when we give Simon Makienok a runout as well. He's a player we've lacked totally in the squad so far."

…integrating the new acquisitions: "The lads are well connected and have a lot of common interests. We've come a long way in that respect. But I'd also like to praise the players who were already here and have looked after the new lads. Everyone sat next to someone different in the evening, there were no fixed groups. And guys like Rodrigo, for example, need no help integrating."

…homework still to be done: "Our goal threat – no need to beat about the bush. Meppen showed us how it's done by shooting from range occasionally as well. The players need to get it into their heads that they can be more resolute in going for goal. Most of my goals were deflections or mistakes by the keeper. And that's fine, it doesn't always have to be the top corner."

…the goalkeepers: "The fantastic energy in the group is really remarkable, the way they are with each other and push each other. We'll sit down now and take stock and then decide how we proceed."

…choosing a captain: "We'll discuss that with the players' committee before the DFB Cup game. But I want to do that at leisure and without any rush."

Photos: Witters

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