Matchday 18: Breitenreiter and Hoffenheim have gone eight games without a win

18th matchday
Breitenreiter and Hoffenheim have been without a win for eight games

Hoffenheim have been waiting for a win for eight games. photo

© Uwe Anspach/dpa

André Breitenreiter moderates the crisis at TSG 1899 Hoffenheim with the routine of a long-standing Bundesliga coach. But his sensitivity is growing, his points account is not.

The industry-standard “Trainer out!” calls have not even been heard in the Sinsheim stadium, but André Breitenreiter is already upset about harmless chants.

“We want to see you fight!” It sounded after the 1: 4 (0: 2) of TSG 1899 Hoffenheim against Borussia Mönchengladbach from the not even fully occupied south curve. “At the end of the day, that doesn’t help the team,” said Breitenreiter. “The boys wanted, they showed heart and passion.”

But Hoffenheim couldn’t really do it again – and so the Kraichgauer’s series has grown to eight games without a win. With another defeat next Saturday at VfL Bochum, the troubled Kraichgauer would finally be in the middle of the relegation swamp. In between, the DFB Cup round of 16 takes place at RB Leipzig on Wednesday. “We’re total outsiders there. But sometimes it’s exactly games like this that you need to turn things around,” said Breitenreiter.

The fact is that the 49-year-old has only 19 points with his team after 18 match days – and is far from the former Europa League ambitions. As a coach, he had never seen anything like this demanded of his team, said Breitenreiter to the fans’ harmless shouts: “I think that’s the completely wrong approach.”

Hofmann and Stindl stand out at Gladbach

But last year’s champion coach of FC Zurich also knows: “We need a sense of achievement, we have to force it.” Four days after the 2-2 draw against a weak VfB Stuttgart, Hoffenheim were duped by two Borussia internationals: Jonas Hofmann and Lars Stindl led Borussia Mönchengladbach to their first away win of the season.

The 30-year-old Hofmann scored the first two goals (12th and 37th minute) on Stindl’s assist. The captain then made it 3-1 (83′) before Joker Hannes Wolf added more (90′). In front of 24,119 spectators in Sinsheim, coach Daniel Farke’s team also celebrated their first win of the year and can therefore look up the table again. The Hoffenheim team, for whom only Ihlas Bebou (80th) scored, looked pretty helpless and harmless for a long time. And they hardly remember what a victory in the league feels like: In the past twelve games there has only been one – at bottom Schalke in October.

TSG sports director Rosen does not want to comment

So Breitenreiter gets more and more in need of explanation – and the sensitivities are also increasing. Sports director Alexander Rosen did not want to comment on the critical situation of the coach, who came for Sebastian Hoeneß last summer. Breitenreiter didn’t help two newcomers in their first starting XI for TSG against Gladbach either: Ex-Wolfsburg player John Anthony Brooks was not exactly safe in defense on his 30th birthday, Danish World Cup striker Kasper Dolberg had to give up after an ineffective one first half off the pitch.

In the end it was the completely exhausted, but also very unhappy playing Christoph Baumgartner, who was looking for words in front of the cameras and microphones. “Crying all over the place,” said the Austrian national player, that’s no use now. “The coach has so much experience, he already knows what the team needs in the situation. He’s a guy who addresses things very clearly, he’s very experienced, experienced and has a lot of knowledge about football. But in the end we are it’s us who are on the pitch.”


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