Master of Puppets
When you ask Germans about Augsburg and what they know about the city many won't be able to give you a sophisticated answer. But one thing will be mentioned for sure: The famous puppet theatre called the "Augsburger Puppenkiste". The adventures of Jim Knopf, Urmel and many characters are well known throughout Germany and it seems that the "Puppenkiste" had a major influence on the city and their football. Although it is based on an old technique with puppets it has come into modernity by being on TV. The team of FC Augsburg is based on traditional values like team spirit and never giving up, but also mixed with a modern style of football. Lastly, a famous song of the "Augsburger Puppenkiste" serves as the hymn when they score a goal. It is called "Eine Insel mit zwei Bergen" and you should listen to it on the internet as it won't be played on Friday ;-) Ok, maybe that was a bit too confident.
Our confidence got a little knock after the well-deserved loss against Leverkusen. Their pressing was even harder than ours was in 2010/2011 and it was obvious how much Hummels, Sahin and Gündogan were missing to overcome this pressing. Ginter tried to fill the gap and he is on a good way but will need some more matches to really make an influence against an opposing side that strong. Leverkusen seemed to be one step ahead with their season preparation as did Liverpool some weeks ago. Furthermore, it showed that we still have problems against physical teams.
Augsburg on the other hand lost their first match of the season as well. Within just three minutes they conceded two goals, both without too much pressure on the defence. Michael Wiesinger won't be too happy with that performance of his defensive line. But, it is not unusual for Augsburg to start slowly into a new season. After they promoted they were named among the teams that will be relegated before the start of each season. What seemed to come true in their first season was still turned around with confidence and calmness. Luhukay left after the season but wasn't fired although he gathered only nine points until Christmas. Wiesinger was put in charge and people were sceptical. But last season Augsburg nearly managed to qualify for the Europa League. This is the first year they invested more than 5 million Euro in new players which is a record for them.
Despite their good team and good performances they still got pumped last season at home 4-0 by us, Aubameyang scoring three goals in that match. Statistically, Augsburg is one of the teams we like to play. We never lost against them and mostly scored more than three goals. Hopefully, this continues and Klopp will be the master of puppets, pulling their strings.
Hitz – Verhaegh, Callsen-Bracker, Klavan, Baba – Baier – Feulner – Caiuby, Halil Altintop, To. Werner - Matavz
Weidenfeller – Durm, Ginter (Subotic), Sokratis, Piszczek – Kehl (Ginter), Jojic, Reus, Mkhitaryan – Aubameyang, Immobile