VfB Stuttgart recently competed in the Bundesliga, with safety at the forefront of football. And coach Hoeneß should also be careful about relegation against HSV.
VfB Stuttgart could have managed to stay in the league twice, but at home against Bayer Leverkusen and in their game against TSG Hoffenheim two games ago, the Swabians had to settle for a 1-1 draw. Either way, staying in the league with a win would have been perfect.
Also with safety football versus HSV?
And in both cases, coach Sebastian Hoeneß was faced with the question of why he recommended such a cautious approach to his team. The answer – “it wouldn’t be right to rush wildly” – was the same both times.
And it allows conclusions to be drawn about the relegation matches against Hamburger SV, which the Swabians played today, at 20.45, and ahead of their polls next Monday.
After all, the Hanseatic League also has a strong team together – already for minor league conditions. Had HSV been similarly well positioned in other areas (the balance between consistency, defense and offense), they would probably have been promoted directly to replace the old Bundesliga Dino, Heidenheim and Darmstadt.
Therefore, it can be assumed that VfB will primarily rely on ball and game control in front of their own spectators so as not to create gaps that would facilitate game-changing for Tim Walter’s team.
Relegated to Union in 2019
Meanwhile, VfB sporting director Fabian Wohlgemuth meaningfully stressed that he knew the “Stuttgart relegation date” and thought it irrelevant. In 2019, VfB were relegated as a major league team after losing in a relegation duel to Union Berlin. “We must now accept this extension for good,” demands Wohlgemuth.
Relegation has deadly consequences for Stuttgart
VfB is almost doomed to do better than it did four years ago. For economic reasons alone: during the corona pandemic the club earned 90m euros less from sales and relegation would have cost another 40m euros.
The club would receive only half of the television money, instead of the previous 40 million euros. The player budget will be halved from around 60 million euros.
And that wouldn’t be the end of the horror scenario: VfB would lose a lot of top players in the event of relegation, and the notoriously split bodies would eventually tear each other apart.
Confusion even with relegation
Meanwhile, Swabians will likely face a change even if they stay in the league. Hoeneß is certain to stay even in the event of relegation. But a new goalkeeper duo is very likely to be trusted. Sven Müller and current number one Fabian Bredlow showed themselves very shaky.
It seems an irony of fate that before the duel with HSV the question of the goalkeeper was one of the most pressing personnel issues in VfB. Bredlow suffered a knee injury before the last game day of the Bundesliga.
He lasted more than 90 minutes against Hoffenheim, but then took a break from training. Now it looks like it could come out on Thursday. Defender Dan-Axel Zagadou should also get in shape on time.
VfB needs to streamline the staff
Whatever the outcome of relegation matches, weakening the bloated roster is crucial. More emphasis should be placed on the in-house infrastructure academy in the future, after sporting director Sven Mislintat, who was fired during the winter months, primarily relied on foreign players with development potential.
Whether in the first or second division, Hoeneß has a lot of work ahead.
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