Sven Piepenbrock: That would have been a great story

With both head coaches absent due to Covid-19 infections, the respective assistants took charge of the game between Schalke and FC St. Pauli on Saturday (4/12). S04’s Sven Piepenbrock and Pauli’s Loïc Favé reflected on the 90 minutes after the game. Martin Fraisl also gave his thoughts to the media.

Sven Piepenbrock

Sven Piepenbrock:

Today was anything but a normal game, but beforehand and during the match I wasn’t thinking about the fact that I was in a different role. My entire focus and energy was on the team. The coaching team has tried to overcome this challenging situation together this week. Our match analyst Lars Gerling was in contact throughout the game with Dimitrios Grammozis, and we discussed things at certain intervals.

The defeat hurts. We should have defended the first goal better. We were too passive and Guido Burgstaller took the chance clinically. We made some tactical changes for the second half and were therefore able to build up more pressure. We got some good balls into the box during the second period, but we unfortunately weren’t always getting on the end of them. If we’d got the goal back just after the break, it would have been a different story. We would have had more time to turn it around and it would have given us a real boost. I still had hopes of getting an equaliser after Rodrigo Zalazar’s goal. Unfortunately, there was a tight offside call which ruled out Thomas Ouwejan’s goal. Keke Topp also came close to making it 2-2 in injury time. That would have been a great story for the lad and for us.

Loïc Favé:

I’m incredibly proud of the team. We have dealt with Timo Schultz’s absence as a unit, and done brilliantly. Fabian Hürzeler gave a speech before the game today which left me with goosebumps. It was an incredibly energetic performance. We defended resolutely as a team. Guido Burgstaller is someone who leads from the front. It’s incredible how much of an impact he has on the game, not just through his goals.

We took some time to get into the second half after leading 2-0. We then had some chances to make it 3-0. Their goal came from nowhere in my opinion. That then meant it was a hectic end.

Martin Fraisl:

As we expected, FC St. Pauli were a tough opponent. They’ve got a good structure, they’re well-versed in what they do and managed to make their mark in the first half. Guido Burgstaller in particular made life difficult for us. He’s incredibly physical, makes good runs and has a good shot, both with his left and right, plus with his head. We found an answer too late on. This week definitely hasn’t been easy for us, though that didn’t play a role in the first half. We cannot and will not use that as an excuse.

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