Sport Bild: Mr. Kopel, you said before the season that you wanted to raise something in the end – it just didn’t work out. Do you repeat the phrase before the next season?
Gregory Coppell (24): Definitely and in the next season and again the next! We play football to succeed and win titles. We have to deal with the fact that he didn’t succeed this year and learn from him. This does not change my motivation at all.
Does a team have to be measured against titles again in order to function?
This is the case in BVB to an extent. From the outside you are judged more by titles than you are internally. For us as a team, it is especially important that we measure performance in every game – because only that leads to success. If we can do our best every three days, we will be successful too.
The BVB has changed coaches all of a sudden. What is your sentiment on Eden Terzic?
You worked so well with Marco Rose. Now the club has decided that Edin Terzic will take the position of coach. I don’t really know him yet, but I am looking forward to the good cooperation I hope.
BVB has already made big transfers with Niklas Sule, Niko Schlutterbeek, Karim Adeyemi and Saleh Ozkan. Did you congratulate the newcomers on this step?
Yes, there was a connection, that was important to me. Because if I were in their place, I would also be glad to be welcomed by everyone. We are definitely looking forward to the four.
Sky expert Dietmar Hamann said the new defense position with Süle and Schlotterbeck is more important than a striker like Haaland, who has scored 30 goals. Do you think so too?
With Erling we lose one of the best strikers in the world. We’ve all seen what he’s capable of. However, we have great players on the team and we have had to show this season that we can win matches without him. With the new, more quality is added. It all looks very good on paper, and now we have to implement it.
571 HP Reach DFB
Wing racer Sani comes in a seagull!
Source: Twitter /itstheicebird
Is BVB’s new defense better than Bayern in terms of numbers?
If we conceded fewer goals at the end of next season and have more points than we got, we can talk about that again.
This season, BVB has conceded 52 league goals, for a total of 74 goals – that’s 1.6 per game. In the SPORT BILD season report, you still got the second division. Would you have classified yourself this way?
For me, it was 39 league goals, right?
Kobel takes out his cell phone and does the calculations.
Yes, I missed five games in which we conceded 12 goals – 39 goals (Marwin Heitz conceded missing goal against Bielefeld after Coppel substitution; editor). That still isn’t a good one-second cut in the table. For me personally, last season was also a massive development process and I’m glad I was still able to help the team so much.
What is the development process?
Our claim at BVB is to play bold, offensive and charismatic football. We want to give something to the fans, be in control and radiate something. Since we’re taking a little risk in the offensive game, we’re conceding one or two more goals. I had to learn that first. But if we win every game 4-3 instead of 1-0, that would be fine for me too. In the end what matters is the team’s success and that we score more goals than the opponent.
The championship role in the league has been very frustrating lately, especially in cup competitions. How was the general atmosphere in the dressing room after the setbacks of the season?
If you are disqualified from three competitions as a team and lose matches, you are clearly angry. It’s also part of the fact that everyone is angry – it would be a bad thing if you simply accepted it. Our goal is to turn negative feelings into something positive. We will stop now and then come back with full force, enthusiasm and energy and really attack next season.
The team hierarchy will also change. Axel Witsel’s place, and in the event of a change, Manuel Akanji’s place on the team board will become vacant. Do you dare to play the role?
Totally trust. But I can’t just claim a role as a leader. You have to earn it through performance. But I’m working towards the fact that it might go in that direction.
Your contract runs until 2026. Can you imagine a long-term career in BVB shaping an era like Roman Weidenfeller?
If at the end of my career I could say that I played for Borussia Dortmund for 16 years like him, then I would have finished my career with a happy ending.