Home » Relegation threatens: frustration, anger and slogans of perseverance – 1. FC Köln on the brink

Relegation threatens: frustration, anger and slogans of perseverance – 1. FC Köln on the brink

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Relegation threatens: frustration, anger and slogans of perseverance – 1. FC Köln on the brink

Sports relegation is looming

Frustration, anger and slogans of perseverance – 1. FC Köln on the brink

As of: 2:30 p.m. | Reading time: 4 minutes

1998, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2012, 2018 – and 2024? 1. FC Cologne is threatened with relegation from the Bundesliga for the seventh time in the last 26 years. This time, however, this could have catastrophic consequences for the second-to-last team in the table.

Even the day after the disaster against the bottom of the table, SV Darmstadt 98, no prospects were shown at 1. FC Köln. The sports director Christian Keller, who was heavily criticized, still seemed at a loss – and coach Timo Schultz seemed to no longer want to see his professionals, who were bitterly disappointing in the 2-0 defeat.

The obligatory training on Sunday was canceled and preparations for the next direct basement duel at FSV Mainz 05 next Sunday will only begin on Tuesday. It should be 17th in the table. from Cologne on the 31st matchday will probably be the last chance to once again decisively move closer to the relegation relegation place in the Bundesliga.

“If we don’t make a leap forward now, it won’t be enough,” Keller predicted on Sunday in Sport1’s “One-two”, still under the impression of the weak performance against Darmstadt, which had previously not won 22 games in a row. “It’s obvious: the quality of what we brought to the pitch was not Bundesliga level,” complained Keller, who had previously planned for a three-pointer in order to be able to attack again in the final spurt of the season.

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Instead, the gap grows upwards. In front of FC, Mainz, VfL Bochum and Union Berlin are currently fighting to avoid relegation. Wolfsburg, on the other hand, made a leap with a 1-0 win in a direct duel with Bochum.

Coach change fizzled out

“With all due respect to the opponent. If you have Bundesliga aspirations, you have to beat them at home,” said Keller, who was at the center of the fan anger. There were repeated whistles and shouts of “get out of the cellar” during the game. “I understand that everyone here in the stadium is upset. In the end, I am primarily responsible and understand that people let out their frustration,” said Keller.

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The central accusation against the 47-year-old is that he has ruined FC’s savings over the past few months. In addition, the change of coach after the separation from Steffen Baumgart to Timo Schultz at the beginning of the year hardly brought anything. The average points under Schultz (0.857 per game) is only slightly better than under Baumgart (0.625) and is still at relegation level. So far, under the new coach, there have only been victories against nine Frankfurt players and, with a lot of luck, against Bochum.

Cologne’s sports director Christian Keller (l.) high-fives Steffen Tigges after the game (2nd from left)

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Source: dpa/Marius Becker

“Timo is doing very, very well so far. “From day one,” said Keller. But the coach also seemed a bit at a loss on Saturday and only had slogans to persevere. “We can play better and we have to play better. If we can do that, we also have a chance of winning in Mainz,” said Schultz, countering the impression of every one of the 50,000 spectators on Saturday.

The pressure of having to win the game paralyzed the players. “Today I had the feeling that we were unsettled,” said captain Florian Kainz and defender Timo Hübers confessed: “Our hearts sank a bit.”

Gloomy prospects for relegation due to transfer ban

It has been clear since Saturday: If FC do not make a quantum leap in quality in the last four games of the second half of the season, the seventh Bundesliga relegation will be perfect. And this time, given the current transfer ban, this could have much worse consequences than the previous six relegations since 1998. Due to a violation of Fifa regulations when transferring Slovenian youth player Jaka Potocnik two years ago, FC is only allowed to make transfers again in the winter. This could be fatal, especially in the summer after relegation, if the club had to give up top performers.

According to “Bild am Sonntag”, attackers Davie Selke and Mark Uth do not have a valid contract for the 2nd league and goalkeeper Marvin Schwäbe, defenders Hübers and Jeff Chabot and midfielder Dejan Ljubicic have exit clauses. “It is actually the case that one or two people have a clause or no second division contract,” confirmed Keller, who could only replace the potential departures with returning loan players or young talent.

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