Joe Scally: “We have to stay focussed”
Defender Joe Scally speaks in interview about the most recent draw against Schalke, the recovery of defensive stability and the Foals’ upcoming away game against Hertha BSC (Sunday, 15:30 CET).
Joe, after two defeats in a row to start the year, you have collected four points in the most recent two games in Hoffenheim (4-1 win) and against Schalke (0-0 draw). How do you rate the last two games in the Bundesliga?
Joe Scally: The first couple of games after the re-start didn’t go the way we had imagined. It was even more annoying because as a team we invested a lot into our winter preparation and had worked hard. Now, we have started the second half of the season with four points, exactly as we did at the beginning of the season. We are happy to have had this turnaround, even if we would have obviously preferred to pick up six points from the last two games rather than four. It was also important to pick up a clean sheet again at the weekend for the first time in a long time. Now, we are looking forward to the game against Hertha BSC on Sunday, and the opportunity to work our way up the table once again.
Like you’ve already said, you were able to pick up your first clean sheet since the seventh matchday against Leipzig (3-0 win) against Schalke. How important was that for your self-confidence?
Scally: It’s always a good feeling to pick up a clean sheet. Especially as a defender, that’s always the aim. The processes and communication with Jonas [Omlin] are getting better and better. It has clicked quickly between him and the team. I think that we proved that at the weekend.
What will it take to maintain this defensive stability on a consistent basis?
Scally: At the beginning of the season, we were very stable defensively. That’s what we want again. We have to stay focussed and concentrate on the way we play. We did that well against Schalke, and can build on that.
But, you can’t really be pleased by the draw against Schalke. What has to be better in comparison to that game for the team to leave Berlin with all three points on Sunday?
Scally: We have to play confidently again, the four points from the last two games should give us a boost. Also, we have to build on the performance from the game in Hoffenheim. We scored four goals there, and we also want to be efficient again this coming weekend. We have fantastic fans, so when we play away games they also sometimes feel like home games for us. They travel everywhere and are very important for us. With them behind us, we are in the position to get points anywhere.
Hertha have lost all four games until now after the re-start. What are you expecting the game on Sunday to be like?
Scally: You can’t let yourselves be blinded by that. I think it will be a difficult game, exactly like against Schalke. Hertha are very competitive and have a lot of individual quality in their ranks. It will be a tough task for us.