Schladming – The time away from Berlin spent in Austria is not unchartered territory for the Hertha players. They are already all too familiar with the energy-sapping training sessions, the accommodation in Schladming and above all the interviews with journalists travelled from Berlin. After their lunch, the Hertha players gave their interviews, discussing their personal goals, Berlin and the upcoming season. After Niklas Stark and Arne Maier, it was finally Vedad Ibisevic’s turn. Herthabsc.de summarised the comments made by the captain.
Vedad Ibisevic about...
...his condition and the importance of goals: Just like everyone else I am giving it all in pre-season and I am trying to stay as fit as I can. Obviously it doesn’t get any easier with age, but I don’t think it’s that much more difficult. Everyone else is also suffering, which makes me feel better about myself! Overall I am satisfied with my condition and I am simply looking forward to the future. Scoring goals will naturally do me good, but the season still hasn’t started yet, so nothing really matters until then.
...the current Hertha squad: Last season we thought that we had improved ourselves, but then finished lower down the table. Therefore it is always difficult to judge before the season, how strong the squad we have assembled actually is. Eventually time will tell. We haven’t made any massive transfers, although a few new lads have joined. We will have to see how it all comes together. Younger players are a lot more unpredictable, and even though other clubs have perhaps spent a lot more money, there is still no guarantee that it’ll work for them.
...the young players: It is unrealistic to expect the young players to have a massive influence from the get-go. They all have plenty of quality, but still need to gain more experience first. Youth football is a different world to the professional game. As a result, they will have to be able to make this adjustment, but they will have our support of course.
...the importance of the experienced players: It is important to have some sort of balance in the squad. The young players need tips and guidance from the older players, in order to improve their own games. This can really help the youngsters. With Salomon Kalou, Fabian Lustenberger, Per Skjelbred, Rune Jarstein, Thomas Kraft and myself we have plenty of experienced players, who are more than happy to share our experiences. We all try and help prepare the youngsters for what is ahead of them.