Freiburg (AP) – Ex-coach Volker Finke trusts his former club SC Freiburg to surprise in the round of 16 of the Europa League against Juventus Turin. Even after the 0: 1 in the previous week with the Italian record champions in the second leg on Thursday (6.45 p.m. / RTL +) it was “realistic that it could be a success,” he told the German Press Agency. In good years, as they are currently experiencing in the fifth place in the Bundesliga, you can also prevail against such a team and reach the quarter-finals. “It’s difficult, but possible,” said Finke, who will be 75 next week.
In the first leg, he said, he was surprised at how well Juventus performed despite the turmoil at the club following the 15-point deduction in the league over financial irregularities. “In the end you have to say: Thank God it was only 1-0,” said Finke. That leaves the possibility of “correcting the result in Freiburg and making progress”. In addition to Freiburg’s qualities such as effectiveness and team spirit, the players’ self-confidence can also play a major role. “You believe in it when you’re in such a good year,” said Finke, who coached Freiburg for 16 years between 1991 and 2007, making him the record coach in German professional football.
The situation before the second leg reminded him of the 2001/2002 season, when Breisgau met Feyenoord Rotterdam with him on the bench in the third round of the UEFA Cup, the predecessor of the Europa League. As is currently the case in Turin, SC lost the first leg in the Netherlands 0-1. In the second leg, the team was 2-0 up shortly after half-time and would have advanced to the round of 16 with this result. However, Rotterdam still equalized to 2:2, throwing Freiburg out of the competition and winning the title a few months later with a 3:2 in the final against Borussia Dortmund.
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