Harnik: 'A big step towards safety'

Stuttgart - Euphoric relief was the overriding emotion for the VfB Stuttgart players after a 3-1 win over FC Schalke 04 that meant a massive boost to the Swabians' hopes for Bundesliga survival.

VfB Stuttgart

It was already a good weekend for Stuttgart with their closest rivals losing, and it ended up being a great one as goals from Martin Harnik and veteran striker Cacau sealed only their second win in 15 games, but perhaps their most significant one of the season. bundesliga.com rounds up the post-match reaction from the Mercedes-Benz Arena…

Martin Harnik: We were improved at the back today and we were really clinical up front. It was important to score the second and third goal when we did as we knew Schalke could always come back. I was happy to score, but the more important thing was the result. We realised we could take a big step towards safety. The toughest thing about a relegation battle is staying mentally tough. We managed to do that with the help of the fans.

Cacau: I had good feeling coming into the game. I've not been in this situation with VfB and I want to do the best I can to help. We knew what we could achieve as the other teams lost, but regardless of that, we played really well today. It was a great win.

FC Schalke 04

Kevin-Prince Boateng: We made mistakes and they punished us. The first goal was silly and we went to sleep in the first ten minutes of the second half. We've played well in the second half of the season but this is a result we have to move on from quickly.

Klaas-Jan Huntelaar: We started well but conceded a poor goal from a set-piece, things got worse and worse as the game went on. We tried to change things and do better in the second half, which worked okay, but the goals we lost were too easy.