Freiburg focusing on Bundesliga stay

With no European distractions in 2014, Freiburg will set about securing Bundesliga survival over the next four months, starting with Saturday's visit of Bayer Leverkusen.


Christian Streich's men struggled to juggle the double burden of Bundesliga and Europa League football in the first half of the season, particularly after losing almost half of the team which took them to fourth place last season.

With just 14 points from their first 17 matches, they occupy a relegation play-off berth which they are keen to leave as soon as possible. Preferably this Saturday.

"We're going to push ourselves to the limit this Saturday," Streich told a press conference.

"That's because, unlike in the first half of the season, we'll have a week to recover and prepare for our next game afterwards.

"We will then face Mainz with the same attitude and try each and every week to give it all we've got, emotionally and psychologically."

Midfielder Gelson Fernandes added: "We lacked time during the first half of the season due to the Europa League.

"Instead of training, we were travelling, but now I'm optimistic and see plenty of potential. I believe in a happy end."

Not only Freiburg will be giving it their all on Saturday, according to visiting coach Sami Hyypia.

"We saw in the cup how hard it will be against Freiburg," said the Finn, whose side triumphed 2- 1 in a DFB-Pokal tie between the two sides last month.

"On Saturday, we're going to have to push ourselves to the limit and give it 100 per cent effort to the very end."

Hyypia has been deprived of Robbie Kruse for the rest of the season after he tore knee ligaments while Sidney Sam, who has agreed a move to Schalke next season, will also be missing.

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