Der VfL Wolfsburg-Trainer Oliver Glasner lacht in die Kamera.
16.09.2020
First Team

“It’s a challenge, not a burden”

Head coach Oliver Glasner was full of optimism ahead of VfL’s first Europa League qualifier on Thursday.

Der VfL Wolfsburg-Trainer Oliver Glasner lacht in die Kamera.

VfL Wolfsburg enter the UEFA Europa League at the second qualifying stage on Thursday evening. In their 83rd match in continental competition, the Wolves travel to Albania to take on domestic league runners-up FK Kukesi. At the press conference ahead of the game, head coach Oliver Glasner was asked about…

…squad availability: “We need to get Jerome Roussillon fit again first after such a long period without training. He’s doing OK at the moment though, and will be included along with Koen Casteels. Other than William, Marin Pongracic and Kevin Mbabu, there are no new absentees apart from Omar Marmoush, who’s been complaining of a slight pain in his knee and is therefore going to stay at home. We’ll also need to replace Jay Brooks who’s suspended.”

…opponents FC Kukesi: “The Albanian league may not have started yet, but Kukesi have already played in qualifying, so we’ve at least been able to watch our opponents once over 90 minutes. We’re up against a very technically proficient side, as we’re accustomed to with teams from the Balkans. Because the coach was only appointed in March, there are still one or two little question marks. On the whole though, we have a good idea of what to expect.”

…the special circumstances: “If you want to play in Europe, there’s a chance you might have to travel to a high-risk region. That’s difficult to avoid at the moment unfortunately, but because I’m familiar with the safety concept and hygiene regulations I don’t have any reservations. Anyway, we shouldn’t view this assignment as a burden, but as a challenge. If we approach it that way, then the workload during the first few weeks shouldn’t be a problem.”

…how VfL are shaping up: “We already did a lot of things very well against Fürstenwalde. Because games are coming thick and fast now, we haven’t spent too much time analysing how that match went. We obviously need to convert more of our chances, though. We’re travelling to Tirana confident that we can reach the next round. And if we perform out on the pitch, we’ll do just that.”

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