Bremen - In SV Werder Bremen's Matchday 20 opener against Hannover 96 on Friday evening, Nils Petersen appeared to be everywhere - running tirelessly, throwing himself into challenges and shooting on sight.
For a long time, it seemed the on-loan FC Bayern Munich striker's efforts would go unrewarded once again. However, the 24-year-old fired two goals in quick succession in the final five minutes to earn the hosts maximum points and give them optimism for the coming games, as he revealed after the game.
Question:Nils Petersen, it wasn't a game for the faint-hearted against Hannover, so the 2-0 victory must have come as a huge relief for you...
Petersen: Yes, because the win was incredibly important for us. You could see that in the emotions after the goals and after the final whistle. I'm incredibly proud of the team. Going by our performance in the second half, I think we deserved the three points too. At the end of the day we managed to win a 50-50 game. Those are the best kind of wins.
Question: When so many chances go to waste, does there come a point when you start to have doubts ?
Petersen: I was sure that we’d get our chance. In the past, we've thrown away too many games like this because we wanted too much. We were desperate to keep it at 0-0 this time, because you have to do that now and again too. So it’s even more satisfying that we played as a team and got the win.
Question: Your second goal was pretty spectacular...
Petersen: It certainly wasn’t straightforward. The ball moved a little, but I looked for the shot. In other games it would probably have struck the post and come out, but it didn’t this time and I’m delighted with my first brace in the Bundesliga.
Question: The assist for the first goal came from Eljero Elia, who' s come in for some criticism of late. How did you rate his performance?
Petersen: The same goes for Elia as it does for the whole team. He had a tough time when he wasn't getting any reward for all his efforts, but we all know that we can rely on him. He showed against Hannover what he's capable of.
Question: What does this win against Hannover mean for Werder Bremen?
Petersen: Our situation hasn't really changed a great deal with these three points, but it was a step in the right direction.
Question: Do you think Werder can now finally get their first back-to-back Bundesliga wins this season?
Petersen: We certainly have the necessary quality in our squad, but we’ve said that often enough. Hopefully we can finally demonstrate that in Stuttgart next weekend. We need to disprove the statistics and build on this victory.
Question: Does the 2-0 win give you the confidence required to beat Stuttgart?
Petersen: I hope this win will give us a boost. We have a long week until our next game and that’s not a bad thing either for us to clear our minds. We still have a lot of catching up to do in the table because we want to get as many points as we did in the first half of the season. The win against Hannover means we now have the same amount of points as we did after the first three games of the first half of the season, but we want to improve on that next week in Stuttgart.
Michael Reis reporting from Bremen