First Team

“We need to give our best”

VfL host Lower Saxony rivals Hannover 96 this weekend.

Bruno Labbadia’s Wolves play host to Hannover in the Lower Saxony derby on Saturday 6 April (15:30 CEST). The current standings suggest the Matchday 28 encounter should be a relatively one-sided affair: the eighth-placed Green-Whites are hoping to close the gap on the European places, while Hannover are battling to preserve their top-flight status. At the press conference ahead of the game, Labbadia spoke to the assembled media about…

…the personnel situation: “William has recovered a little more quickly than Yannick Gerhardt - we’re hopeful he’ll be available on Saturday. Things aren’t looking as good for Yannick, though. The chances of him playing against Hannover are very slim. We’re about to have an important training session, during which we’ll focus on our opponents. We obviously have a couple of ideas of how to replace those absentees.”

…Hannover’s struggles on the pitch: “I think we’d do well to focus solely on ourselves. Hannover did very well against Schalke recently - they deserved at least a point and could easily have won the game. The most important thing is for us to remain calm and work in a focused manner. I never underestimate any opponent; anyone can beat anyone in the Bundesliga. We’re not so presumptuous to assume that we’re a lot better than them and will get the job done with our eyes closed.”

…the Wolves’ approach against 96: “We’re prepared, we want to produce a focused performance and try to play our own game. It’s still going to be hard work as we’re up against a team who are battling to stay in the league. Hannover have several good players in their ranks who are always capable of producing a good performance. It’s a Bundesliga game and we need to give our best.”

…Elvis Rexhbecaj’s development: “Elvis has improved considerably and is one of our key players. In my opinion we don’t just have 11 first-choice players, but 14 or 15 who we need to call upon on a regular basis. Elvis has forced his way into that group. If someone had said before the season that he’d be in the matchday squad every week, nobody would have believed it. He has an incredible passion for football and wants to improve every day - there’s a lot to come from him.”



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