Finally back at home!
After three consecutive away games, RB Leipzig will have their fans back behind them at the Red Bull Arena when they face off against SC Freiburg on Sunday (19:30 CET). As per usual, RBL's head coach Marco Rose answered questions from journalists ahead of the game.
What does Marco think of SCF? Who's fit and who's not? And what does he make of Janis Blaswich's inclusion in the Germany squad? Our head coach answered all this and more in Friday's press conference. We've gathered all of Marco's most important quotes below.
I'm expecting us to play with hunger and aggression.
Marco Rose on...
...Crvena zvezda and reaching the UCL round of 16
- "Every positive result has an effect on the mood in the dressing room. We always want to win and whenever we achieve one of our short-term goals, like reaching the last 16 of the Champions League, we feel good. It makes us more confident.
We still had a meeting today and clearly addressed areas where we can improve. It's important for us to point out our weaknesses in moments like this and ask why we weren't as good in the second half as we were in the first 45. Obviously, we're very happy on the whole that we won in Belgrade."
...the approach to the game on Sunday
- "We've lost some ground in the Bundesliga. I'm expecting us to play with hunger and aggression - we want to get back on track in the league. We haven't been doing the little things well when we've lost. We know that we're one of the best teams in the league when it comes to winning the ball. We’ve recently spoken about what we should be doing in possession against teams that like to sit back.
Now we’re excited to see how Freiburg are going to play on Sunday. Are they going to sit back even more? Or are they going to surprise us and go for it early on? That’s the big question."
- "Just like last year, Freiburg are going to be a really tough opponent. They'll be confident after their 5-0 win in the Europa League. They've been able to spread the playing time around pretty well and will feel like they've settled into a rhythm, as they're playing every Thursday and every Sunday.
They've got a good side and their team is pretty similar to last year's team apart from the keeper. That being said, they've found some consistency in that department, too. They improved across the board in summer."
Freiburg opponent analysis
Marco Rose on...
...the similarities between RBL and SCF
- “Freiburg are in a similar situation to us. You’ve got your own aims, but people also expect things from you because you’ve been playing in Europe for the last couple of seasons. Then, there are also the phases where things are a bit trickier.
That being said, they’ve generally showed that they can get through phases like this. They’re not doing too badly in the league and they’ve reached the next round of the Europa League, just like we have in the Champions League. They also got knocked out of the Pokal like us. Both teams have had similar seasons up to this point.”
...Janis Blaswich being included in the Germany squad
- "I’m happy. Janis always puts in a good performances and he's a true professional – he’s earned it. He’s been really impressive over the past few months. It’s testament to the work that Frederik Gößling and our goalkeeper coaches have been doing.”
... Frederik Gößling’s training sessions
- “Frederik does a lot of fine-tuning with the boys. He puts a lot of passion into every session. He likes doing drills that resemble in-game scenarios. Frederik is a fantastic goalkeeper coach. You can see the fruits of his labour now. Pete Gulacsi is on his way back to full fitness after his injury and Janis has been called up to the Germany national team for the first time at 32 years old. It makes me really happy.”
...his first professional goal against Freiburg in the Bundesliga
- "I didn’t score many goals over the course of my career, but that was a nice one – maybe the best one I ever scored. It must’ve been pretty deep into injury time. The game was over after that and it was Mainz’s first win after getting promoted to the Bundesliga. You don’t forget moments like that. Richard Golz must’ve been in net for Freiburg. It was an absolute thunderbolt – he had no chance. It’s a cool memory."