It's been an interesting few days for Bruno Labbadia. Firstly his arrival at HSV was hijacked by Jürgen Klopp's breaking news on Wednesday, and now his first game is against Werder Bremen in the north derby.
On paper, Burno Labbadia's appointment asHamburg manager
- its fourth of the season - was a surprise. Immediately though, the former HSV player took his new team on a two-day training camp to Rotenburg, removing them from their usual surroundings which have been host to an historically bad season so far.
"Our team is rightly sitting in last place and the standings do not lie," Labbadia told reporters in Rotenburg. "Obviously the team is not brimming with self-confidence and so I will not come out and promise anything. We have a tough time ahead of us."
The famous clock showing Hamburg's Bundesliga lifespan has ticked for over 50 years at the Volkparkstadion, but could finally run out of batteries this summer. Sitting bottom of the Bundesliga, the need for results is greater than ever and despite it being derby day against Werder Bremen this weekend, three points will mean so much more than bragging rights on this occasion.
Speaking at his press conference on Friday Labbadia said: "We must be a fortress in Bremen. My team and I are ready to take on this challenge. We believe we can succeed." Both Rene Adler and Pierre-Michel Lasogga are expected to start.
Despite Labbadia's contract being available for the second division, that scenario is what Hamburg want to avoid most. Considering Hamburg hasn't scored in five games and hasn't won in eight games, relegation remains likely.
"We are obviously aware of the statistic that 90 percent of teams in our place at this stage of the season end up being relegated," Labbadia said. "We want to be part of the 10 percent."
Before Robin Dutt was sacked earlier in the season, Werder were bottom of the Bundesliga. Since Viktor Skripnik's appointment, they have jumped up to ninth and have watched their rivals go the opposite way.
Defender Johan Djourou is suspended against Bremen after being sent off in the 2-0 home loss to Wolfsburg. The former Arsenal defender's suspension could be a blessing in disguise though, after reports emerged that Djourou had a scuffle with Swiss teammate Valon Behrami in the changing room at halftime of the Wolfsburg match.
It was an emotional day on Wednesday as Klopp announced that this season will be his last with Borussia Dortmund
Dortmund depleted, even with Klopp
After yesterday's news thatJürgen Klopp will leave
Borussia Dortmund this summer, attention has now turned to the weekend's sporting matters. Dortmund face Paderborn and three points are much needed, but hard to come by, especially with an injury list as long as Bayern Munich's.
"We're without Nuri Sahin, Oliver Kirch, Lukasz Piszczek, Sebastian Kehl and Neven Subotic," said Klopp, who had to check his phone to recall the names at his press conference on Thursday. "Marco Reus, Jakub Blaszczykowski, Sven Bender, Erik Durm and Kevin Großkreutz haven't trained," added Klopp.
Against the Bundesliga's worst team in the second half of the season, Dortmund is still expected to win despite a lack of numbers. Paderborn, who had a dream start to the season, have won just once in their last seven games. Nevertheless, Andre Breitenreiter's side is just six points behind Dortmund going into this weekend's match.
While all eyes are always on Bayern Munich, this weekend away at Hoffenheim might intrigue even more fans after the surprisingnews that long-standing team doctor Hans-Wilhelm Müller-Wohlfahrt
"It was Hans' decision to leave and I respect it. Nothing happened between us," said Pep Guardiola at his press conference on Friday.
Guardiola confirmed that he will be staying with the club next season and commented on the incident where he was seen clapping towards the bench in the German Cup game with Bayer Leverkusen. "It was my dissapointment that [Medhi] Benatia was injured. It was nothing to do with the doctor."
Bundsliga Matchday 29 fixtures: Frankfurt 0-0 Borussia Mönchengladbach, Bayer Leverkusen vs. Hannover, Borussia Dortmund vs. Paderborn, Hertha Berlin vs. Cologne, Hoffenheim vs. Bayern Munich, Freiburg vs. Mainz (Saturday), Augsburg vs. Stuttgart (late Saturday), Werder Bremen vs. Hamburg, Wolfsburg vs. Schalke (Sunday)