VfL Bochum’s next Bundesliga home match is just lying ahead on Sunday afternoon (kick-off 15:30 CET), when the lads welcome league leader 1 FC Union Berlin at Castroper Street. Ahead of the fixture VfL head coach Thomas Letsch answered the journalists‘ questions.

Thomas Letsch on…

…the squad: Takuma Asano, Paul Grave, Lys Mousset, Simon Zoller and Jacek Góralski are still not fit to play. Konstantinos Stafylidis and Michael Esser have fully recovered. Jacek Góralski most probably is going to join the regular training sessions from next week.

…the return of Michael Esser:  We have three top class goal keepers in our squad, each of them enjoys our full trust. So it’s highly important to us that all of them are available. Normally Michael Esser would find himself back in the matchday squad.

…Dominique Heintz: Dominique Heintz is a very experienced player as he has made many Bundesliga appearances. He’s a good communicator, which I really appreciate. On the pitch he’s a real organiser and is therefore always an option. I am glad that he’s back with us. He was also on the spot when he was sent on in the Elversberg match.

…reaching the next DFB-Pokal round: every now and then I’ve read that we just avoided a disgrace. Well, I see it differently. We‘ve made it to the last 16 cup round and beat a strong opponent.

…1 FC Union Berlin: Union Berlin are currently on top of the league - and that’s not the only part why they are the measure of all things. They use to play a clear and simple style of football. Everybody knows what to do. They keep it tight at the back and can immediately break fast, they are highly effective. At the moment it is one of the toughest challenges to play Union Berlin. But we accept it. If we manage to play a dirty style of football, I dare we can be successful.

…the strategy for the upcoming game: There’s no need to hide ourselves. In the recent two home matches we managed to draw with Cologne and even win against Frankfurt. Every victory gives us more confidence. That’s the best mindset for the upcoming game. We will not create that many scoring chances, so we need to be really effective and keen on being successful.

…the meaning of communication in football: There’s almost no team that communicates too much. Communication is extremely important. When you communicate with each other, e.g. when the opposing side is in possession, it’s always a help for one another. One thing we keep working on in the training sessions. Talking about communication there’s always room for improvement, I won’t ever be satisfied actually.

…the defence: The defence is the base for winning games. We need to improve that. We need to keep a clean sheet more often. It’s all about the whole team to do defensive work, less about single players.