VfB head coach Bruno Labbadia is likely to still be without striker Serhou Guirassy against Union Berlin on Saturday. “He hasn’t been able to take part in a full session with the team yet – he’s only done passing drills and played as an extra man in tactical exercises,” the Stuttgart boss said on Thursday. “There’s still a question mark over Silas, too. He’s been suffering with muscle problems and didn’t appear in his second international match.”
The rest of the VfB squad have been working “hard and intensively” during the international break, according to Labbadia. The emphasis has been on the offensive third, including drills that focus on finishing and forward runs into deep areas. There was also a 2-0 victory over second-division Heidenheim in a friendly last Friday.
In Berlin, Labbadia is expecting to face a side whose “compactness, possession and togetherness” set them apart. “Nobody hides and everyone is prepared to play the way they’re expected to,” continued the 57-year-old. “Their self-confidence also enables them to win tight games. They have a clear, straightforward way of playing and always put in 100 per cent.”
Labbadia is not expecting “pretty play” to make the difference in the capital, adding: “We need to be up for the fight. Physicality, challenges, patience, efficiency and concentration are required against Union. We can’t afford to give away much and need to be patient – but we also want to play football and attack them.”