Kadeřábek: “The self-belief is back”


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How did you feel after the victory in Bremen?

“There was a huge sense of relief after the final whistle. We gave everything and fought for every ball for 90 minutes. Bremen gave us a scare when they got the goal back to make it 2-1, but with a bit of luck, which I think we deserved, we managed to hold on for the win. We were very happy to take the three points home and we want to build on that on Sunday.”

You set up a goal for the first time this season…

“Finally. (laughs) It took far too long, even though I have already scored two goals this season. Baumi (editor’s note: Christoph Baumgartner) thanked me for the cross after the game, but that’s what I’m there for. We have been lacking the results in the past weeks and months, and I also did not always produce the desired performance. But fortunately things are going better again now.”

You have been in the starting XI in the last few games, but you were often coming off the bench towards the end of the first half-season. What was that period like for you?

“It wasn’t very easy for me. I’ve almost always been in the starting line-up in the seven years beforehand. Nonetheless, I knew that my time would come and stayed calm. Instead of complaining, I gave everything in training and stated my case for more playing time. Pellegrino Matarazzo showed his trust in me from day one, which helped me regain my self-confidence. Now I don’t want to give up my place on the right side anymore.”

How important is the match against FC Schalke 04?

“We want to pull away and can take a big step in the relegation battle. But we also know that three points will not be enough to keep our place in the division. We still have eight matches left and cannot drop off in any single one of these matches. The game is sold out and the fans have supported us marvellously in recent weeks. We will also need that in this important game on Easter Sunday. If we perform the way we did in the last two games, then I’m confident we’ll be successful.”

What kind of opponent are you expecting?

“Almost everyone had written Schalke off in the first half-season, but the team didn’t give up and continued to believe in themselves. They’ve gotten their reward for that and are fully back in the relegation battle. The team that will take to the pitch on Sunday no longer bears any resemblance to the team that we won twice against in October (editor’s note: 3-0 and 5-1). Schalke are brimming with self-confidence following some good results. We’ll need to give everything and produce our best performance in order to compete.”

You could make your 200th Bundesliga appearance. What does this landmark mean to you?

“I’ve already spoken to my family about it because it makes us unbelievably proud. Eight years ago, I would’ve never expected to play 200 Bundesliga matches for TSG Hoffenheim. This landmark shows that I feel very comfortable at the club and am performing consistently. I still have two years left on my contract, so I’ll be happy to add a few more games. The best thing would be to crown my landmark appearance with a victory.”

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Kadeřábek: “The self-belief is back”

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