Oliver Christensen has been a part of the Hertha family for exactly two weeks. Since seeing his new club suffer defeat in Munich, where he wasn’t a part of the matchday squad, the goalkeeper has had numerous chances to make a good first impression in training during the first international break of the season. The goalkeeper looks back positively on this time. “The first two weeks were really good, I’m happy to be here. I like the training; it’s exactly how I’d imagined it to be,” Christensen told journalists at Schenckendorffplatz on Thursday. The 22-year-old spoke about…
…his German skills and the first two weeks as a Hertha player: I studied German for five years during school so I can already understand most things, but English is better for talking to the media. In four months’ time I’ll understand everything and we will do the interview completely in German (laughs). It’s important to me to learn the language that’s spoken around me. German is the spoken language most of the time in training and I want to understand everything. I have an advantage thanks to my school days and German is a little easier to learn than Danish. It’s very important to be able to speak with my teammates at all times. My English is good, but I’ll improve my German. The first two weeks have been good, I’m happy to be here. I like the training; it’s exactly how I’d imagined it to be.
…training in Germany: It’s different to what I’m used to. We train harder and more often. However, I wasn’t surprised – I’d already heard about it. You never know how your own body is going to feel. I felt it a bit in my legs after the first few days, but I love to train a lot. It’s good for my development. The level of our goalkeeping training is high; that’s what I’d expected. We’re playing in the Bundesliga. It’s good to work alongside such good goalkeepers. It’s not a given, but it’s important because it creates competition at a good level.
[>]I know that it’s probably unlikely that I’m going to play straight away, however I want to be ready if the opportunity arises.[<]
…his ambitions at Hertha: I know I have to be patient as a young goalkeeper. You can never know what will happen in football. I’ve already played once for my national team because four other goalkeepers were out. A similar situation happened which allowed me to make my debut for Odense BK. I will have to show patience here at Hertha and wait for my chance. I know that it’s probably unlikely that I’m going to play straight away, however I want to be ready if the opportunity arises. I’m young and want to learn – that’s why I came to Berlin! We’ve already had a lot of games in training and I want to impress there to be able to play competitive matches.
…his first impressions of Berlin: I’m still living in a hotel at the minute, but I’m going out a lot to find good restaurants and I’m seeing what else is about. The last time I was in Berlin, I visited the East, including the wall and the museums. This time, I’ve stayed in the area around my hotel. Hopefully I’ll see more parts and eventually have a favourite area. I’ve trained even more and even harder during the international break. I’m looking forward to seeing more of the city soon. The traffic here is crazy too. I come from a town with 5,000 people living there. Berlin is another world – it feels almost as big as Denmark! (laughs).
[>]The team is close with the coaching staff and we’ll keep on working together until we’re successful.[<]
…the current sporting situation and the Bochum game: It’s obviously been difficult so far. We need to keep on going, work harder and start picking up points. It’s also a mental issue when things don’t go to plan. I remember a feeling like this from my old club. The team is close with the coaching staff and we’ll keep on working together until we’re successful. I don’t know if I’ll make the trip to Bochum, but I obviously hope I do. I’m fit and ready, however if I don’t, I’ll train here in Berlin. I played a few games already this season in Denmark so I’m prepared.
…his idols: When I was young, I saw a few great Oliver Kahn performances. Peter Schmeichel is also a role model for all Danish goalkeepers. Aside from those two, Manuel Neuer is another one. I’ve watched many of his matches over the years. He’s been top class for Bayern and Germany for a long time. I’d say I’ve got a few idols then. I think more goalkeeper training and experiences in Germany will do me good.