Hoffenheim vs Freiburg Preview

Heurelho Gomes is set to make his Hoffenheim debut only hours after arriving at the club from Tottenham


The 31-year-old has been brought in to replace Tim Wiese, who has faced criticism from all quarters recently and, according to Hoffenheim's general manager Andreas Muller, had fallen into a no-win situation.

"Tim has no chance in the current situation," he said. "No matter what he does, he has no chance to be treated fairly.

"The pressure he is under in every game, to remain mistake-free, was inhumane.

"He cannot deal with that, which is why it was our duty to take action."

Gomes has arrived on loan until the end of the season and will make his debut against Freiburg on Saturday in a must-win game for the Bundesliga strugglers.

"Three points are hugely important," said coach Marco Kurz.

He has several new faces at his disposal, including Igor de Camargo and Eugen Polanski, two of six new signings in Hoffenheim this winter.

That makes it more difficult for Freiburg coach Christian Streich to know what to expect from his opponents on Saturday.

"Of course they have a bag of tricks when you look at the Hoffenheim squad," he said. "They have so many different alternatives for their team.

"Fundamentally, though, Hoffenheim have a very good Bundesliga team when you look at the individuals they have got."

Streich also has an important individual available again, with Cedric Makiadi returning from the African Nations Cup following the Democratic Republic of Congo's elimination.

"I presume they trained seriously there and I therefore hope that his condition is good," said Streich at a press conference.

"We will have a chat to see how he rates his condition, and then we will decide what that means for tomorrow [Saturday]."

Should Makiadi not be deemed fit, Johannes Flum should keep his place in the visitors' attack.

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