Frank Kramer: We have to have more confidence in our play with the ball

Head coach Frank Kramer spoke to the media on Thursday ahead of the first of two games in a row against TSG 1899 Hoffenheim, who will visit the VELTINS-Arena on Friday night (14/10, 20:30 CEST). Among other things, the 50-year-old discussed dealing with last weekend’s heavy defeat.

Frank Kramer

“We sat down after the Leverkusen game and analysed the match,” reported Kramer, who has a number of tactical and personnel changes on his mind ahead of the Hoffenheim clash. One possibility is moving to a back-three/back-five, which Kramer feels would make the side more compact and solid in the middle. It would also allow the full-backs to get higher up the pitch and put more crosses in. “That’s one option for us. We have already tested it out during pre-season and in training. We don’t want to rule anything out,” said Kramer. The S04 head coach will definitely not have Marcin Kaminski, Ibrahima Cissé, Sepp van den Berg and Rodrigo Zalazar at his disposal for this matchday 10 encounter. Tobias Mohr may also miss the game after suffering from an illness at the start of the week, though the 27-year-old did complete parts of training on Wednesday.

We know more is expected of us, and we want to show we’re capable of that.

Frank Kramer

According to Kramer, the attitude will be as important as the team he selects, particularly after last week’s poor performance. “We know more is expected of us, and we want to show we’re capable of that. We have to play at a higher intensity on Friday,” demanded Kramer. One thing giving the S04 boss hope is that his side had played a lot better in a number of games prior to the one at the BayArena last weekend.

Take advantage of the space and be more dangerous

Kramer described the upcoming opponents as a mature side, and one that look to play good football. They have talented players in the centre and have improved at the back too. André Breitenreiter’s team are flexible with their attacking play and a number of players can switch positions. “That’s something we will have to deal with,” admitted Kramer. “We have to have more confidence in our play with the ball and look to do more with it.” The Royal Blues’ coach wants every player to impress when they have the ball at their feet and stressed how important it will be to use the space afforded to his players by the opponents. “We have to get our final ball or pass right in order to get closer to their goal,” stated Kramer.

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