Germany: DFB Pokal
3 - 2
(3 - 2)
Mainz 05
J. Burkardt (53), K. Onisiwo (59), M. Ingvartsen (114)
M. Okugawa (2), F. Klos (89)
By Peter Weis@PeterVicey

Svensson, Kramer, and Arabi speak ahead of Mainz-Bielefeld doubleheader

Four of the 16 second-round fixtures scheduled to take place in round two of Germany's domestic cup feature top-tier teams playing other top-tier teams.

The Mainz-Bielefeld game will see the reunion of two trainers who recently left the Red Bull system to coach tradition rich Bundesliga clubs.

To make matters even more interesting still, the two teams will play one another again immediately in the league on Saturday. 

Mainz head-coach Bo Svensson, Bielefeld trainer Frank Kramer, and DSC sporting director Samir Arabi all shared their thoughts in the respective Monday pressers.  
FSV Mainz 05 trainer Bo Svensson was all smiles at his Monday presser. After a sluggish start to the year, his Nullfünfter completed unloaded on visiting FC Augsburg with a 4-1 romp before a raucous crowd at home Friday night in the Pfalz.

Mainz now get another chance to play another night match under the floodlights in front of their loyal supporters. Opponents Arminia Bielefeld are currently 17th place in the Bundesliga table. The DSC has not even won a league fixture yet through nine matchdays this year.

Svensson has neither injury woes nor form issues to be concerned about. Absent Jeremiah St. Juste--who finally underwent his much discussed shoulder surgery yesterday and will be out until 2022--everyone on the Mainz roster is healthy. Svensson also has one German football's hottest young attacking stars (Jonathan Burkardt) rearing and ready to go.

"The hype is a bit much for me," Svensson said of the scorer of two goals an provided of one assist in Friday night's victory, "I'll judge him [Burkardt] over the course of weeks and months, not just one game. Consistency is the key with him."

Svensson nevertheless smirked when discussing the form of the Germany U21 international, who made an excellent case for a call-up to the Nationalmannschaft with a gala performance right in front of attending Bundestrainer Hansi Flick.

The Danish trainer also couldn't help but smile when asked about his former colleague in the Red Bull System Frank Kramer. The current coach of Bielefeld coached RB Salzburg's U18s whilst Svensson ran the FC Liefering farm club at this time last season.

"I can't tell you how many degrees of beaurcratic separation there was between the two of us," Svensson joked, "but Frank and I have a very good relationship. We are friends."

Svensson's old colleague is not off to the greatest start with his current club team. Arminia Bielefeld are second-from-bottom in the Bundesliga table. They've not yet won in the 2021/22  Bundesliga season and are only ahead of SpVgg Greuther Fürth by virtue of five draws.

In his own presser, Kramer was not asked about a reunion with Svensson. Instead, the DSC gaffer had to talk about why his strikers weren't producing. Fabian Klos has scored twice thus far in the campaign, but new acquisitions Janni Serra, Bryan Lasme, and Florian Krüger still haven't found the back of the net.

"These guys are talented attackers," Kramer said whilst appealing for patience, "They shouldn't be short-shrifted in my opinion."

The man who put together the roster for Bielefeld's difficult second season in the top-flight was also present at the Bielefeld press conference. Sporting director Samir Arabi actually received widespread respect for the work he did over the summer transfer window. The administrator linked with the vacant sporting director position at Köln offered his thoughts on why the higher caliber performers he procured weren't quite in gear yet.

"We are 100 percent convinced of every player we have under contract here," Arabi said, "We're convinced that they are in the right place. It's important to remember that they are men and not machines."

Arabi had more to say on the topic of percentages.

"Of course we need points to play in the Bundesliga, but we're on the right track," Arabi continued, "It's about having conviction. If one or two percent of the effort is lacking, that's not good enough in the Bundesliga. We play attractive football, but perhaps that one or two percent is missing."

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