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Germany: Bundesliga
1 - 1
(1 - 0)
FC Köln
L. Daschner (25)
D. Selke (54)

Baumgart remains stoic on relegation fight, Keller backs Effzeh trainer to remain in charge

By Peter Weis   @PeterVicey

FC Köln trainer Steffen Baumgart emphasized some positives after yesterday's 1-1 away draw at Bochum. On Germany's Sunday famed television footballing roundtable "Doppelpass", club sporting director Christian Keller gave Baumgart his explicit endorsement. 
Steffen Baumgart.
Steffen Baumgart.
A point taken from yesterday's away fixture at VfL Bochum wasn't enough to lift 1. FC Köln off the bottom of the Bundesliga table. Steffen Baumgart's Geißböcke remain in last place on six points. The cathedral city side has started the season with a poor record of just one win, three draws, and seven losses. Matters might get uglier still after the international break with league opponents FC Bayern München waiting.

When assessing his team's latest performance, Baumgart admitted to the Sky Germany interview team that Bayern (in their present form_ are "far too massive for us". The characteristically blunt trainer called out his squad for a very poor first-half performance. Baumgart noted that it took a emotional locker-room speech to motivate his team into taking their first point after falling behind all year.

"I think that the lads weren't clear in the head today, especially in the first half," Baumgart told his interviewers, "We often make the wrong decisions. That's how we let Bochum into the game today. We have to put a stop to that. I wasn't clear about that in the first-half. They weren't clear on my instructions."

The 51-year-old did wish to make clear that he was pleased (though "not satisfied") with the team's second-half performance. Baumgart emphasized that a point taken mattered immensely in the relegation race. Moreover, he also said that he felt the overall points total in the current campaign wasn't entirely reflective of the type of effort his charges had put forward.

"We took to it much better in the second half and must learn to live with a point," he noted, "At the end of the day, we should underline and asterisk the fact that we took a point. We had a very, very good goalkeeper [Marvin Schwäbe] who kept us alive and made consistent use of our opportunities, except one [Davie Selke's chance at the 2-1 in the 76th]."

"Fighting relegation means confronting emotions and accepting things that have nothing to do with football," Baumgart continued on when asked about the future, "We'll give [Bayern] our best shot. We had some luck today. We'll throw everything into it and hope for some luck [in the next match]. I'm focusing on what we can do. If we can't do it, we're in trouble."

As a guest on Germany's famed Sunday footballing roundtable "Doppelpass", club sporting director Christian Keller wished to make that - even if the team was in trouble - Baumgart (at least for the moment) was not. The Effzeh/DFL administrator joined his coach in condemning Köln's performance two weeks ago, declaring himself mostly pleased last week, and describing the most recent result as a mixture of fortitude and luck.

"A Bundesliga team should be able to defend Bochum's long balls," Keller said, "It wasn't fit for the Bundesliga. We got away with a big black eye. We spoke clearly about that. We knew what we were up against, but didn't execute. The team needs to tighten up. We'll still manage to stay in the league with Steffen Baumgart."

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