Home » Against Lens in the Europa League: Freiburg coach Christian Streich calls for “increase”

Against Lens in the Europa League: Freiburg coach Christian Streich calls for “increase”

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Against Lens in the Europa League: Freiburg coach Christian Streich calls for “increase”

As of: February 14, 2024 8:33 p.m

SC Freiburg has to play against RC Lens in the Europa League. Coach Christian Streich warns of a strong opponent. Captain Christian Günter even compares the French to Juventus Turin.

European Cup trips are still something very special for SC Freiburg. “This is what we work for every day and for so many years,” said coach Streich. The anticipation of the playoff first leg in the Europa League at RC Lens on Thursday (9 p.m.) will not be ruined by the recent defeat at Borussia Dortmund (0:3).

Nicolas Höfler: “We are hot”

It was another “big game” for the Baden team, emphasized veteran Nicolas Höfler and assured: “We are hot.”

Freiburg’s fight against the trend

The Baden team is fighting against their current negative trend in the atmospheric Stade Bollaert-Delelis. They have recently lost three times in a row in the Bundesliga. They didn’t manage to score a single goal from the game. Vincenzo Grifo scored from a penalty against Werder Bremen (1:3), and Lukas Kübler scored from a corner against VfB Stuttgart (1:3). In Dortmund last Friday, the Freiburg team remained offensively harmless and therefore completely unsuccessful. Streich complained that the routes in the penalty area or the last pass were often not right.

Things should be different again in Lens. But Freiburg’s attack department has to come up with something against the French, who recently celebrated three wins in a row in the domestic league and have conceded the fifth fewest goals so far this season. How, for example, can the people of Breisgau get their peaks better showcased again? Striker Lucas Höler has scored once in five competitive games since the turn of the year, Michael Gregoritsch hasn’t scored at all. Apart from a chance to head the ball, the Austrian was completely indifferent against BVB. The technically adept Grifo, the energetic Roland Sallai or the nimble Ritsu Doan are all able to break open opposing defensive lines with a pass or dribble. Just like the talented Merlin Röhl, who is currently suspended in the league but is eligible to play internationally. Only: you have to show it more often.

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Christian Streich: “Lens is one of the top teams in France”

However, a very difficult task awaits. For SC coach Streich, Champions League relegated Lens is “one of the top teams in France” and “very ripped off defensively”. According to the 58-year-old, his team needs an “absolute improvement in performance” compared to the Dortmund game. The match is a “big challenge”.

Christian Günter demands “two absolute top performances”

Captain Christian Günter also warned of the “huge chunk” and compared his level with Freiburg’s last year’s round of 16 opponent Juventus Turin. The Baden team lost against the Italians 0:1 and 0:2. Regarding the chances of progressing, Günter said: “We can only do that if we deliver two absolutely top performances.”

Against Lens, the left-back is in Freiburg’s European Cup squad for the first time this season after a long forced break – and is visibly happy about it.

Günter made his much-celebrated comeback in the Bundesliga against VfB Stuttgart just a week and a half ago. In SC’s 3-1 home defeat against the Swabians, he came on as a substitute just under a quarter of an hour before the end.

Manuel Gulde is probably there

After all: According to Streich, Manuel Gulde, who had to leave the game against BVB, may be able to play again in Lens. When looking at the overall situation of the season so far, in which many things are no longer as easy for the Freiburg team as in the last two years, the personnel needs should not be ignored.

Nevertheless, the SC is fighting against Lens, the Champions League relegated team and currently sixth in the Ligue 1 table, in addition to the trend and a bit of a change in mood. If possible, the course should be set so that international travel continues for a while.

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Broadcast on Wed, February 14, 2024 6:00 a.m., SWR Aktuell in the morning, SWR Aktuell

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