When it comes to stopping goals, Jaroslav Drobny is crucial for Berlin. Hertha's Keeper is 29 years old and was born in Pocatky, Czech Republic. He's in the Czech national team squad. And he can speak English too.
Against Leverkusen you saved a huge number of shots. Jesus-like is how people described the performance. How important is your role in the team?
When you are 1-nil down and you save a 100% chance you can see that the team feels the chance to score a goal. This happened against Leverkusen. They had 3 or 4 chances to score a goal. Then Andrej scored a goal. And we got the three points.
But when he can't play - due to injury - then things are tough for Berlin. The replacement keeper let in 5 goals in the last match. What's it like watching that from the stands?
It’s horrible because you can't do anything. What happened yesterday is football. This can happen. You have to make sure it doesn’t happen again.
Let’s talk about Berlin. What made you decide to come here?
Because of the ambition of Hertha. It’s a big club. I came and spoke to Mr Hoeness, I was in Berlin for one day. He showed me around the club. He explained what he wants the club to do in the future. And I liked it.
There was a Celtic offer on the table too. Why did you pick Berlin ahead of there? Does it have something to do with the Bundesliga?
I decided on the Bundesliga because every game is a hard game. In Scotland you cannot say that. You have two or three clubs. Every year you play Champions League. But it doesn’t have the quality of the German league.
You were born in the Czech Republic, what was it like growing up there in a small town?
Yeah, it was very easy. We had just one ball, one pair of shoes and a stick for ice hockey. You have only two choices: to be a football player or an ice hockey player. It was nice in the village because during the summertime we were playing football, football, football. During the winter time we played football in the hall during the night, and during the day we were always on the ice.
Was there a dream where you thought: I can do this professionally one day?
I had a little fight with my teacher when I wrote an exam where I had to say what I want to do in my life. I wrote that I wanted to be professional footballer and then she called my parents. She said that they have to explain that I need to think about something else. This isn’t going to happen.
After playing in the Czech Republic, and moving to Greece you really stayed there for a while. The country became very important for you. Why?
Yeah I got married there. I love the country. I live there. It’s like home. Whenever I speak to my friends and say I’m at home, I’m in Greece, not in Czech Republic. Even if I have my parents there, I feel more at home in Greece.
And you were baptised there aswell. Can you tell us about that?
Yeah, we have a son. When you want to give a name to your child in Greece you have to baptize him. I wasn’t baptized before. And they said if you are not, then we cannot baptize your son. That’s why I had to go for three weeks during my holiday to the church to learn about the Orthodox religion. Then they baptized me and straight afterwards they baptized my son.
With your baptizing there was also a bit of a problem, wasn’t there?
In the barrel you mean? Yeah I was just standing. The normal way is they put the child in the water. But I couldn’t go in. It was too small. They put olive oil all over your whole body.
Ah yes, Greece. Sun, sea, the good life! But this is reality - winter in Germany. And there are tough times ahead.
The next opponents in the league are Hoffenheim. You are laughing. It’s going to be tough, of course.
Right now they are playing fantastic football. They can be trailing 1-nil and they know they can score three or four goals. They’re a danger team. Everyone is scared of them right now. We are going to play Sunday against them. We know it’s going to be very tough. We know they are in good condition. But we have to do everything to beat them. We are playing at home and we cannot lose the points at home.