HSV is suddenly “mature and ripped off”
The next away win lets Hamburger SV climb in the table. Coach Walter is satisfied, praises the maturity of his team and emphasizes his minimum goal for the season. City rivals FC St. Pauli are still looking for a way.
Aaway it runs like clockwork at Hamburger SV. Three games, three wins – no other team in the 2nd Bundesliga can offer that. The 2-0 win at 1. FC Nürnberg on Saturday evening brought the North Germans within one point of the promotion places. “We performed very confidently,” said coach Tim Walter with satisfaction and praised his men: “I think we played maturely and ripped off what we may have lacked in the last few weeks.”
Across seasons and competitions, there are even eight competitive wins in a row on foreign pitches that the Hamburg team can show. The other side of the coin: things are not going as planned at home. Two of their three home games this season were lost. “We also like to win at home,” said Walter, before concluding: “In the end, I don’t care where we win, the main thing is that we win.”
It didn’t matter to one in particular in the Hamburger team. Tim Leibold made his comeback from the start after recovering from a cruciate ligament rupture. Experiencing this moment in the Max Morlock Stadium of all places, where the mishap happened last year, gripped the left-back. “It was a special moment for me to come back exactly where I was ten months after my serious injury and to be back in the starting XI for the first time. That’s how life works sometimes,” said Leibold.
In addition, the 28-year-old was active for Nuremberg for four years and had played the most games in their jersey to date. “A providence”, Walter called the comeback at that place. Leibold will probably not forget the goosebump moment under the floodlights.
And there were other premieres: for the first time, Bakery Jatta and newcomer Jean-Luc Dompé formed a pair of wings in the starting XI after Ransford Königsdörffer, as is well known, had to serve a two-game ban. “We didn’t use our counterattacks well enough,” Walter complained, but didn’t want to overstate that. The Hamburgers also lacked precision with the flanks in front of the opposing goal.
Nevertheless, the top favorite is pushing forward on the rise. Even without the heavyweights Schalke 04 and Werder Bremen, this year’s second division vintage is tougher than expected. The balance is unchanged. “In the end we were third,” said Walter, looking at the previous season: “Now we want to be second.”
Once again, his team is the strongest defensive team in the league. She has only conceded three goals after six games. In the entire year before that it was 35, eight goals less than second-best Bremen. The circumstance is remarkable in view of the offensive style of play in Hamburg with a far advanced formation that invites counterattacks. When even top scorer Robert Glatzel admits that his team “defended superbly and didn’t allow much from the first to the last minute”, there must be something to it. Glatzel: “That’s the basis.”
FC St. Pauli is looking for the “punch”
The heart of St. Pauli was also the heart of a fighter. But even the old basic virtues and a huge passion did not ensure absolute satisfaction for coach Timo Schultz: “I would have liked to have won the game and I think that would have been possible,” said the 45-year-old after the 2-2 ( 0:1) on Saturday against second division leaders SC Paderborn.
After a highly dramatic overtime with Paderborn leading 2-1 through former St. Pauli pro Sirlord Conteh (90+2) and equalization again through Hamburg central defender David Nemeth (90+3), Schultz grasped the emotional world of the both those responsible on the sidelines fit together: “Here are two satisfied dissatisfied coaches. Both have a point, and that’s okay in the end.” In any case, the two teams offered the 29,269 spectators at the Millerntor a thrilling game.
Paderborn’s coach Lukas Kwasniok also struggled with the league leaders’ game: “We couldn’t control the aggressiveness and intensity of FC St. Pauli in the first half and only rarely brought ourselves into moments when we felt comfortable.” The team had taken the lead shortly before the change of sides through Marvin Pieringer (44th), Kwasniok then described as “happy” and added: “I then told the boys the truth in the dressing room that that was by far the worst half.”
This conclusion was also due to the fact that the Hanseatic League had found their way back on track after the bloodless and disappointing 0:2 at Hansa Rostock the previous weekend. “We did really well in the first half, exerted a lot of pressure and didn’t allow much,” analyzed Schultz. Leart Paqarada’s penalty kick (51st) didn’t throw the Kiezkicker off course either. “The fact that we came back after being 0-1 and 1-2 shows that we can never be written off,” said Etienne Amenyido, who scored to make it 1-1 (84th).
For attacker Igor Matanovic, the fact that Hamburg, who now have two wins, two defeats and two draws on their account after six matchdays, was not enough, was also due to the fact that “the last punch up front” was missing.
Another striker might come
Those responsible for St. Pauli want to work on the penetrating power until the transfer window closes on Thursday at 6 p.m. According to media reports, the club is negotiating with striker Aurélien Scheidler. The 24-year-old Frenchman is currently playing in his home country for second division club Dijon FCO. In any case, Timo Schultz said before the game on Sky: “We’ll keep our eyes open until the last transfer day. If something happens, it’s good. If not, I’m happy too.”