For a footballer, there’s nothing better than powering down after a successful weekend. Following the hard-fought and deserved win on Friday evening against Greuther Fürth, that was the privilege given to our Herthaners. After two and a half days off to relax, head coach Pál Dárdai welcomed his squad back to the training ground on Tuesday morning. Whilst the lads spent the morning in the gym on strength and conditioning, the afternoon session was back to normal in working on the Schenkendorff pitch. “We changed our methods this time and also did our game analysis this morning,” said Dárdai on the Blue-Whites’ start to the week, looking forward to the upcoming clash on Saturday afternoon (15:30 CEST) against RB Leipzig.
Lots of effort in training
The players were eager to get the ball at their feet – 15 minutes before the session’s start the lads were already knocking the ball around on the pitch, and during the 75 minute long session the effort was bang-on: “There was a great amount of effort out there, with good movement and lots of distance run,” said our head coach, satisfied. Unfortunately, four players did not feature today: Myziane Maolida and captain Dedryck Boyata, who both sustained hamstring injuries in the game on Friday, Jordan Torunarigha, also out with a muscular injury and Lukas Klünter, who had a successful operation on his shoulder.
Piątek makes more steps
Rune Jarstein continued his recovery individually, along with Stevan Jovetić, who worked through a program with fitness coach Hendrik Vieth. “’Jove’ was running, and on Wednesday he’ll have a test. I think it will be tight for the Leipzig game, but we’re expecting him to be back against Freiburg,” said Dárdai on the squad, continuing to discuss another attacking power. “We’re still watching Krzysztof Piątek closely, because we don’t want to score an own goal in bring him back too early,” said the Hungarian. Wary of making hasty decisions, he also made it clear that he has plans the polish attacker. “On Wednesday we’re going to be trying out tactics and formations on the full-size pitch and checking how far along he is. If he’s doing well enough then, I’ll have no issues naming him on the bench for Saturday.”
Reinforcements for the defence
In the first team’s session today were 19-year-old Christalino Atemona and Cimo Röcker (27), moving up from the Under-23s. “The two are helping us out at the moment. Chris has played in our youth squads along with Márton – he’s very quick and robust. Cimo is good on the ball and has more experience. We’ll see if we take one or both of them to Leipzig,” said our head coach, looking in-house for defensive support. In terms of the left flank, there is some positive news as Dárdai gave the all-clear to Marvin Plattenhardt after he came off at half time against Fürth. “We need Marvin. He’s a step further along compared to the week before, so we don’t have to wrap him in cotton wool anymore,” explained the head coach to the media. As Dárdai returned to the dressing room, a large part of the team was still out on the pitch, peppering the goalkeepers with shots. The enthusiasm to train was as strong as ever – and that is a seriously good sign.