Now is the time to build on the win over Bayern: on Saturday (15:30 CET/live ticker on tsg-hoffenheim.de), TSG Hoffenheim face a road trip to Eintracht Frankfurt and, after their impressive success against Bayern Munich, they'll be hoping to pick up another good result. In his pre-match press conference, TSG head coach Sebastian Hoeness shared his thoughts on Andrej Kramarić, Saturday's opponents, the injury to Ermin Bičakčić and the lessons from the Bayern game.
Sebastian Hoeness on…
… Eintracht Frankfurt: ''I'm expecting a really difficult opponent. Frankfurt play a very physical style and have immense fighting spirit. They like to attack early on. We have to be ready and prepared for this. We need a good plan, and passion too. It will be a huge challenge. We are looking forward to it and we will rise to it.''
… the personnel situation: ''Benjamin Hübner hasn't trained with the team yet. The Frankfurt game will probably come too soon for him. However, I'm confident that he'll be able to return to team training over the international break. In addition to the long-term injuries, we have a few players carrying minor knocks. We'll have to see how training goes tomorrow.''
… the win over Bayern Munich: ''It was an extremely strong performance from us. We want to build on the positives from that game. However, we shouldn't forget that we were talking about a poor second-half in Cologne just a week before. We're in the midst of a process. We know where we stand. You have to continuously work on everything. We nonetheless want to take the positive aspects with us.''
… Ermin Bičakčić's injury: ''That one hurts a lot. It's a big loss for us in many regards. Ermin is a model professional. He's hugely popular in the team and among the fans. His injury means we've lost an important member of the squad. We were able to plug the gap in the Bayern game, but now we have to absorb his attitude as a team. I hope he stays close to the group so that we can feed off his energy. I'm sure that he'll be able to come back quickly.''
… Andrej Kramarić: ''Andrej is undoubtedly extremely important for us. He can make the difference, and he's shown this again and again recently. He's also very hard-working and always plays for the good of the team. It's clear how important Andrej is for us as a team. He's well on his way to achieving legendary status at the club.''
… the Europa League draw: ''I haven't had any thoughts about potential opponents. I would be up for getting one of the really big names. We want to be successful and make it past the group stage.''
… the return of fans to stadiums: ''Naturally we felt the presence of the fans on Sunday. It had a positive effect on us. Simply put, it's more enjoyable with fans there. There are no two ways about it. We hope that everything works out in Frankfurt and fans can be there in the stadium.''
Eight wins, seven defeats and seven draws - TSG's overall record against Eintracht Frankfurt is just about tipped on the positive end of the scales. However, the last Hoffenheim win dates back to three-and-a-half years ago: Benjamin Hübner scored in injury time to snatch a 1-0 win on 30 April 2017. Since then, TSG have drawn two and then lost four on the bounce.
The opposition's form:
Coach Adi Hütter's side can be happy with the start they've made to the new season. Frankfurt progressed to the second round of the DFB Cup with a 2-1 win away to 1860 Munich and are unbeaten after two league matches, currently sitting third in the table with four points.