Düsseldorf - Following victory over VfB Stuttgart on Matchday 20, the feeling of relief around Fortuna Düsseldorf's ESPRIT Arena was palpable.
In seeing off the Swabians, Fortuna recorded their first win of 2013 having lost their first two outings. Instrumental on the day was Australian attacking midfielder Robbie Kruse, who caught up with bundesliga.com after the game...
Question: Robbie Kruse, congratulations on the 3-1 win over VfB Stuttgart and your two goals. What did you make of the game?
Robbie Kruse: We played really well. We were organised and dangerous on the counter. We gave a good account of ourselves.
Question: What did the team do differently after back-to-back defeats?
Kruse: We were disappointed with the way we lost those two games and the silly goals we conceded. We scored first against Stuttgart. That got the fans behind us and gave us self-belief. We worked really hard on our build-up play during the week and it paid off.
Question: After a difficult first year, you've adapted to life in the Bundesliga very quickly and raised your game. Now you've scored your first top-flight brace. How do you feel?
Kruse: Right now I'm tired and don't really want to talk only about myself. I'm just happy for the team. It's good to score, of course, but it's more important that the team wins. We're playing in a fantastic league against great teams and now we belong among them. We know what has to be done and we've put the two defeats behind us. We really needed to win and it showed.
Question: Tell us about your two goals.
Kruse: Robert Tesche played me in for the first. Luckily it went in. Ken Ilsö's pass for the second was great. I wasn't sure if I could squeeze it through, but it went in.
Question: What were the problems in the first two games of the Rückrunde?
Kruse: In the last couple of games we went behind and conceded sloppy goals. When you go behind in the Bundesliga, it's always tough. This time we got our noses in front and that gave us the impetus. We were also more aggressive.
Question: Against Stuttgart you played on the right, whereas you've previously played more centrally or on the left. Which position do you prefer?
Kruse: I don't really know. I'm happy just to be playing. The main thing is that I can help the team push on.
Question: What was your first Humba with the fans like?
Kruse: It was fun. Johannes van den Bergh helped me. Hopefully I didn't do too badly. I wish my German was a bit better. At the moment it's still quite difficult for me.
Question: You've now got 24 points on the board. What do you make of your position in the table?
Kruse: For us it was important to pick up the points after two defeats. The first half of the season was great. I hope we're now back on track. With every bit of success, we put a bit of distance between us and the bottom three.
Question: Fortuna travel to SC Freiburg next. What do you expect from the game?
Kruse: It'll be a really important game against a team who have played really well so far this season. Before that, though, I'll be playing for Australia in Spain [against Romania].
Interview by Tobias Gonscherowski