Teamcheck Karlsruher SC: On the constant search for constancy

So went the first half of the season

Six wins, seven draws, five defeats. That is the yield of the Karlsruher SC after 18 match days. The team of coach Christian Eichner got a total of 25 points and wintered in 10th place in the table. So far, so solid. What the KSC is missing this season is consistency. The strong start to the season with eight points from the first four games was followed by a roller coaster ride in autumn, positive and negative experiences regularly came on the doorknob. Three examples:

1. KSC won on matchday 7 away from Bundesliga relegated Schalke 04 2-1, a week later it set a 1: 3 home defeat against FC St. Pauli.
2. After a 3-1 defeat at Fortuna Düsseldorf on matchday 11, Karlsruhe sensationally won the DFB Cup at Bayer Leverkusen just a few days later. The euphoria was quickly gone when the Baden team went down again just a few days later with 2: 4 against Paderborn. Half-time score at that time: 0: 4!
3. At the end of November, the KSC defeated the team Hannover 96 at home 4-0, a week later Karlsruhe remained without points after a disappointing performance in Dresden – final score: 1: 3.

In the week after the defeat at Dynamo Dresden, coach Christian Eichner openly stated that his team was showing unsteady performance.

Who is coming, who is going?

The only winter newcomer is Daniel O’Shaughnessy from the Finnish first division club HJK Helsinki. The KSC agreed on a change with the Finnish national player at the end of August, but this should only take place after the end of the season in Finland (based on the calendar year). The 1.90 meter tall defender joined the Karlsruher SC team at the beginning of December and has been eligible to play since the beginning of 2022. At the training camp in Estepona, Spain, at the beginning of January, the central defender made a good impression. “He is calm and serene, has good positional play and a strong left foot,” said sports director Oliver Kreuzer about the 27-year-old, who was on the ball for Finland in the summer.

No further transfers are planned this winter, neither additions nor withdrawals. KSC coach Christian Eichner is hoping for the return of some players who were last out with injuries. Right-back Marco Thiede is back in action after a pelvic contusion and winger Marc Lorenz after a shoulder dislocation. The offensive forces Kyoung-Rok Choi and Malik Batmaz as well as defender Robin Bormuth are still injured for the time being. Leon Jensen, who suffered a minor internal ligament injury, is not yet fully operational.

The trainer

Christian Eichner is firmly in the trainer’s saddle at Karlsruher SC. At the beginning of October, the 39-year-old prematurely extended his contract with Baden until summer 2025, both the club and Eichner are striving for a long-term cooperation.

Eichner, who was born in Sinsheim in the Rhein-Neckar district, laced his football boots for the KSC as a teenager, went through all the junior teams and made the leap to the professionals via the reserve. After his active career, Christian Eichner’s path led back to Karlsruhe, the U17 coach quickly became an assistant coach, then an interim coach, and Eichner has been head coach at Baden since summer 2020. His athletic vita is closely linked to the KSC, he identifies 100 percent with the club and his job. In addition, the cooperation with assistant coach Zlatan Bajramovic works very well. As part of the contract extension, managing director Oliver Kreuzer said: “Christian and Zlatan fit the KSC like a fist in the eye.”

Expectations for the second half of the season

Christian Eichner’s goal before the season was: To play a stable, carefree season and to keep relegation as early as possible. Nothing about that changed during the winter break, the 40-point mark is the goal. The lead in 16th place is currently eight points, the gap to third place is only five points.

Above all, it is important for those responsible to get the strong fluctuations in performance and results under control. “To get a little more consistency and to confirm good games with a positive result in the following week should be one of our goals,” said Oliver Kreuzer of the dpa. And: KSC has already been forced to score many goals several times this season in order to score. The defense wobbled regularly (28 goals against in 18 games), that should change. The simple formula: if there is zero at the back, only one goal is enough to score three points at the front.

Karlsruher SC will travel to Darmstadt for the first league appearance in 2022. Kick-off is on Saturday evening at 8:30 p.m.

Stand: 11.01.2022, 19:33

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Teamcheck Karlsruher SC: On the constant search for constancy