The SC Freiburg squad is stronger than ever. This is one of the reasons why the Breisgauer have been playing an outstanding season so far. Now they are challenging the great FC Bayern in the top game.
Sometimes SC Freiburg doesn’t even know how it got to this point. The Bundesliga season is now ten game days old, and the comparatively small sports club from Breisgau is the only club that is still unbeaten. The SC is in third place, has 22 points and conceded just seven goals, which is by far the fewest of all teams. And now, as an exception, the team of coach Christian Streich can play a real top game at the big FC Bayern (Saturday, 3:30 p.m.).
Christian Günter: “That was not to be expected”
“We have an initial situation that nobody could have expected,” said Freiburg captain Christian Günter. “Maybe after the third match day you can go to the top game as SC Freiburg in Munich. But after ten match days, I don’t think that was the case.”
Lukas Kübler: “How amazing”
In fact, this constellation is unique: the fact that both teams are in the top three before a direct duel has never happened before. Hard to believe for the people of Freiburg. “Sometimes we say: How amazing, we haven’t lost since August! None of us knows that,” said defender Lukas Kübler in the “kicker” interview.
Excellent squad planning
While such top games are part of the club’s statutes at Bayern, the starting position in Freiburg is the result of the constant work of an exceptional coach and excellent squad planning. Streich has been working as a professional coach for his heart club for almost ten years, and there has never been a rudimentary expulsion of the 56-year-old. And the native of Baden has never before been allowed to train such a strong team.
“The team is hungry, everyone gives everything for success”
“We lost almost no one this summer and we got a lot of youngsters. We have improved the quality extremely, in the last few years. This year it seems to be an extra step,” said captain Günter. “And the team is hungry, everyone gives everything for success.”
No bloodletting this time
In summer 2020, the SC had to give up Luca Waldschmidt, Robin Koch and goalkeeper Alexander Schwolow and thus three top performers, a year later only the regular staff Florian Müller and Baptiste Santamaria left, who were replaced more than equally. Instead of Müller, Mark Flekken, who was previously injured and recently made it to the Dutch national team, is now in goal. For Santamaria came Maximilian Eggestein from Werder Bremen, a player who not so long ago was associated with a top club like Borussia Dortmund. Now professionals like Eggestein, Vincenzo Grifo, national player Nico Schlotterbeck and Nils Petersen are under contract with SC.
“Freiburg has long ceased to be the small Gallic village somewhere in Breisgau,” said Hertha managing director Fredi Bobic a few weeks ago. The club has grown and so have its structures. The SC recently moved to the new stadium, where the Champions League anthem could even sound in the future.
“Then we are the idiot of the nation”
Günter laughs when asked about it. “We know that we have extreme potential. But if we start talking ourselves big now and we don’t bring it to the field afterwards, then we’re the idiot of the nation,” said the 28-year-old.
That’s why they won’t travel to Munich with big declarations of war. Even before the top game, “humility” remains one of the favorite words of Streich and his players. Anything else wouldn’t fit the sports club either. Although it’s no longer the little SC he was years ago.