Dortmund - There was no reason for Borussia Dortmund to panic after they had gone 1-0 down to VfL Wolfsburg at Signal Iduna Park on Saturday. Luckily for Jürgen Klopp’s team, Mitchell Langerak happened to be between the sticks.
BVB have yet to lose a match when the Australian international has deputised for first-choice goalkeeper Roman Weidenfeller in the Bundesliga, and things were no different on Matchday 29 as Dortmund came from behind to claim a gritty 2-1 victory.
After the win over Dieter Hecking’s side, Langerak spoke to the assembled media about his impressive record, as well as Dortmund's UEFA Champions League quarter-final second leg against Real Madrid CF on Wednesday.
Question:Mitchell Langerak, you started the match against Wolfsburg and helped your team to win. Was it the perfect day for you?
Mitchell Langerak: It’s always nice to be out on the pitch from time to time. It was very important for the team that we got the three points today. It was a big step in the right direction. We’ve got a bit of a cushion in the table now. If we hadn't won, the next few weeks would have been difficult.
Question: In the first half, a Dortmund wasn't looking all that likely…
Langerak: We were under a lot of pressure in the first half. Wolfsburg created a lot of good chances, but thankfully they only scored one. We made too many mistakes and were too sloppy in possession, and we could have been two or three down at half-time.
Question: How were you able to improve in the second half?
Langerak: We showed our true colours in the second half and at the end of the day we deserved to win. We changed our system a little bit, played more attacking and put more pressure [on Wolfsburg]. Our determination also helped us get the victory.
Question: Your record is incredible: this was your ninth appearance for BVB in the Bundesliga and you’ve managed to win eight and draw one of those games.
Langerak: They’re just numbers. Thankfully I have a good team in front of me! They make my job in goal really easy.
Question: Isn’t it difficult play well when you’re a little short of match practice?
Langerak: That’s true, I’m sure everyone can appreciate that. If you’re getting a lot of match practice, it’s obviously easier on the pitch. But I’m aware of my situation and know I have to be ready to play with at the drop of a hat. I was told on Friday that I’d be playing against Wolfsburg on Saturday, so I had one day to prepare.
Question: How did you prepare for the game? Did you do anything differently from usual?
Langerak: In terms of the training, it was business as usual. We did everything the way we would usually do it, but it’s important for me to prepare mentally for the game. That’s what it’s about when you know you’re going to play.
Question: What about Tuesday’s return leg against Real Madrid? Will you be deputising for Roman Weidenfeller again?
Langerak: I can’t say. For the team’s sake, I hope Roman recovers by Tuesday. It’s an incredibly important game for us. Our Champions League adventure isn’t over, even if we lost the first leg 3-0. We’re always capable of scoring one or two goals, especially at home. We can, and we need to. We’ll just have to see what happens.
Dietmar Nolte reporting from Dortmund
See Dortmund coach Jürgen Klopp's leap of excitement as the second goal went in on Saturday, courtesy of the official Bundesliga YouTube channel: