Cologne - There were equal measures of elation, pride and regret following the year's final round of German top-flight fixtures this past weekend.
bundesliga.com was on hand to jot down the best of them from the steely-nerved men in the dugout...
1. FSV Mainz 1-2 FC Bayern MünchenKasper Hjulmand (Mainz): "All evening we did what we could to spring a surprise. It was difficult against one of the best teams in the world. We did all we could. We pressed them high up the pitch and that worked early on, but then we changed a bit. We defended a little more deeply, but we did it well. We had our chances. We ran out of steam towards the end though. It hurts that we lost to a last-minute goal. It hurts not to be rewarded for our efforts."
Pep Guardiola (Bayern): "It was a very tough match. Many congratulations to my opposite number and his team. Mainz did really well getting in behind our defence in the first half, but we had more control of possession after the interval. We're very pleased with the win and the Hinrunde as a whole. We've played with heart regardless of the opposition. Now we need to get some rest and prepare for the rest of the season. I'd like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!"
SV Werder Bremen 2-1 Borussia DortmundViktor Skripnik (Bremen): "We're really satisfied and delighted to pick up a home win before Christmas. It's not been easy these past few days dealing with all the stress and criticism. I'm happy we answered our critics today. Every single player brought their A-game. The atmosphere created by the fans was phenomenal, too. I'm very grateful."
Jürgen Klopp (Dortmund): "The game summed up our season. It was a bit scrappy after we conceded the early goal. We didn't play well in the first half, but made some changes in the second and improved a bit. We put Werder under pressure and also had chances, yet it wasn't enough. All the criticism that's come our way is justified […] So far we've lacked stability, and we will work hard to get it back. It will become much more difficult to beat us and we will win games again. We'll fight back with everything we've got."
FC Schalke 04 0-0 Hamburger SVRoberto Di Matteo (Schalke): "It was an eventful 0-0 draw. We started the game well and created a few chances. In the second half, our performance level dropped and we ran out of steam. It was our fifth game in 14 days. Coupled with the injuries, that makes it difficult. Hamburg played well."
Josef Zinnbauer (Hamburg): "It was difficult for us right from the start. We seemed a bit nervous after [Klass-Jan] Huntelaar hit the woodwork, but we improved as the game went on. With a bit more luck we could have gone in at the break in front. After the interval we played well. Both sides had their chances. We feel that we deserve the point."
VfL Wolfsburg 2-1 1. FC KölnDieter Hecking (Wolfsburg): "It was a tough game, as we expected. It was pretty clear that we'd reached our maximum output level and just weren't as fresh as we could be. Köln pushed us to our absolute limits. They played well in defence and created chances. Unlike in other games, we didn't create many chances, but made use of the ones we had […] I'm delighted with the win and it takes something special to be able to turn a game. The table looks good and the first half of the season was exceptional."
Peter Stöger (Köln): "I'm really happy with our performance. We were playing against a very, very strong side, we did really well and almost came away with a point. The result is tough to take because it was such a close-run affair, but against a team of Wolfsburg's quality, one or two things can turn the game. Congratulations to VfL on their performances throughout the whole season so far."
Hertha Berlin 0-5 TSG 1899 HoffenheimJos Luhukay (Hertha): "We gave them a massive hand - you only have to look at the goals. We've only got ourselves to blame. It's a tough defeat, but we have to deal with it."
Markus Gisdol (Hertha): "You could see that the team's in great shape. We were really on it today and that made the difference. It's been a really good first half of the season for us. 52 points for the calendar year's great. Now we just want to enjoy it."
SC Freiburg 2-2 Hannover 96Christian Streich (Freiburg): "We were up against a really good Hannover side, but we still managed to take the lead. The second half was one of our best performances of the first season-half and then we went and gave two goals away. It's the fifth time I've had to say that."
Tayfun Korkut (Hannover): "I'm not quite sure whether I should be happy or not. We hit back from 2-0 down after putting in one of our best performances of the Hinrunde in the first half. The important thing was that we didn't panic at 2-0 down."