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A fiery training session

Hertha began preparing for the game at 1. FC Köln in high spirits on Tuesday (24.09.19). Boyata and Grujic were involved in a shorter session.

As the players reported for duty at Schenkendorffplatz on Tuesday morning, the pitches around them were almost completely full. This week, young athletes from all over the country are taking part in ‘Jugend traniert für Olympia,’ the world’s largest school sports competition. The boys in blue and white were peaking over to watch until Ante Covic started the session. His team trained on the pitch for 75 minutes and he was pleased with what he saw. “It’s always good when there’s some fire in training. You can tell the guys aren’t just sitting back after the win at the weekend,” said the 44-year-old, who witnessed some intense battles between members of his squad.

While Covic made no secret of how important it was to get a first win of the season against SC Paderborn on Saturday, it also revealed some areas that the coaching team and players need to work on together. “We saw some things we need to improve on,” said the head coach. Attentions now turn to the next game at 1.FC Köln on Sunday (29.09.2019, 18:00 CEST) where Hertha will be hoping for more success. “We are now totally focused on the Köln match. We are expecting it to be a very different game than the last one. The boys need to want the ball and run at the opposition so they drop off and are unable to press,” explained Covic. His meaning is simple – more possession and control of the game.

Grujic and Boyata rested

The training session took place without Jordan Torunarigha, Daishawn Redan, Maurice Covic, Dennis Smarsch and Sidney Friede, who will be in action for the U23s on Wedensday (25.09.19, 20:00 CEST) in the Premier League International Cup against Benfica’s U23s side. “I am familiar with the competition from my own experience. It will be good for them to get some match practice at such a high level,” said their coach, who also had to go without Peter Pekarik and Arne Maier.

The two injured players will also miss the double session on Wednesday (10:00 CEST and 15:00 CEST) and the sessions on Friday and Saturday. As such, they are not part of Covic’s plans for the match in Cologne.

Teams, 24.09.2019