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HSV has to face difficult questions

After all, Tim Walter was insightful.

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HSV has to face difficult questions

After all, Tim Walter was insightful. "I apologized to my team. I don't think I did her a favor there. I have to keep myself under control there,” said the coach of the second division soccer team Hamburger SV. Otherwise an advocate of discipline, he couldn't control himself in the 2:4 against KSC in Karlsruhe and saw the red card.

And as if that wasn't annoying enough, the 47-year-old talked to the assistant referee Christof Günsch before his departure, tapping his chest several times with his right index finger. The red card was preceded by “a skirmish between two banks. This happens every week. So not that dramatic,” explained Walter. "The referee saw it a little differently."

At least he will have to watch the northern duel on Saturday (1 p.m. / Sky) against Holstein Kiel from the stands. His finger attack on the assistant referee could possibly even result in an even longer ban from the German Football Association.

But the sometimes desolate performance of Hamburg before the break had more of an impact than the coach's temperament. The game left questions: Is the almost obligatory second-division break coming again? Does the aspirant for promotion lack leadership players? Can you hold your nerves?

In favor of HSV, the questions about the impressions of the game cannot be answered necessarily. "That was one of the worst things that HSV ever put on the pitch in my time. We have to chalk that up," Walter told Sky TV about the first half. "Total catastrophe," Robert Glatzel scolded the camera about the first half. That "had nothing at all to do with the 2nd division". After all, the 29-year-old had briefly fueled hopes of a comeback with his two goals after the break and was the only one from his team to stand out.

It was Hamburg's second frightening half-time performance within a month. In the game against promotion rivals 1. FC Heidenheim on March 11, they were also 3-0 down at the break. As in Karlsruhe, the gap should have been even higher. In Heidenheim, the North Germans still managed a 3:3. "We can't always catch up on that either," said coach Walter about the 3-0 break in Karlsruhe.

It was worrying that Sebastian Schonlau's absence revealed such a dependency on the injured captain and defense chief. The 28-year-old was missing not only as a stabilizer on the defensive, but also as a leader on the pitch. No one at HSV came close to being able to go ahead. Not even replacement captain Jonas Meffert. He and many of his teammates were more concerned with themselves than the toxic opponent. "There was just too much missing," admitted Meffert.

The defeat against KSC was the first after seven games. But in the games since the start of the second half of the season, Hamburg have repeatedly shown weaknesses. Apart from the 3-0 win over 1. FC Nürnberg the week before, there was hardly a convincing performance. Teams like KSC put HSV, who are better at football, under pressure with high stakes and a simple game.

Since HSV was relegated in 2018, the club had lost its good starting position in the second half of the season three times in a row and missed the eagerly awaited return to the Bundesliga in fourth place. HSV also experienced a dip in form last year, but recovered again and only failed in the relegation.

In tabular form, the danger of déjà vu currently appears manageable. Hamburg are second, one point behind Darmstadt 98 and one point ahead of Heidenheim. What is almost more important: The lead over fourth-placed SC Paderborn is eight points ten games before the end of the season - still. In front of the NDR microphone, Walter was convinced: "We'll play in the Bundesliga next year."

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