Bayer 04 Leverkusen head coach Roger Schmidt (l.) is targeting third place following Saturday's 2-0 win at home to Pep Guardiola's FC Bayern München
Bayer 04 Leverkusen head coach Roger Schmidt (l.) is targeting third place following Saturday's 2-0 win at home to Pep Guardiola's FC Bayern München

Schmidt: 'Finishing third is in our hands'

Cologne - The Bundesliga coaches were typically candid in their post-match appraisals following a mixed bag of results for all concerned on Matchday 31.

Bayer 04 Leverkusen 2-0 FC Bayern München

As ever, has collated the the best of them...
Roger Schmidt, Leverkusen: "I'm especially happy for Julian Brandt. He was really motivated, even though he didn't start. Finishing third is now in our hands."

Pep Guardiola, Bayern: "It was a very hard-fought and evenly-contested game. We needed to create more clear-cut chances. I’m very satisfied with my team and the performance we put in. The young players also did very well."

TSG 1899 Hoffenheim 1-1 Borussia Dortmund

Markus Gisdol, Hoffenheim: "The atmosphere was electric, both teams attacked and neither shied away. We were the better side for the first 60, 70 minutes, but then Dortmund had the better chances on the counter. It's just not fair how fast [Pierre-Emerick] Aubameyang is. Both teams deserved to win today. It was a really good performance. We want to build on it. We don't want Dortmund to pull ahead [in the table]."

Jürgen Klopp, Dortmund: "It was a really intense game. You could tell we'd played on Tuesday. Hoffenheim played lots of long balls to [Adam] Szalai and [Anthony] Modeste. That was difficult to defend against because we had to run a lot to close the spaces. We weren't switched on for the goal. [Kevin] Volland shouldn't have been allowed to win the ball so easily. It was important to equalise so quickly. Both sides had their chances in the second half; both could have won it. We have to accept the point. Obviously we still want to overtake Hoffenheim, but it won't be easy."

VfL Wolfsburg 2-2 Hannover 96

Dieter Hecking, Wolfsburg: "Hannover were the better side in the first 15 minutes, but then we took charge and scored goals at important points in the game. Then we allowed Hannover back into the game and we gifted them their first goal. We deserved to be punished by their second goal and, to be honest, we can count ourselves lucky that they didn’t get a third in injury time."

Michael Frontzeck, Hannover: "We were expecting a difficult game. We started well, but totally lost control of things after 15 minutes. We were deservedly two goals down at the break and I had plenty to say at half time. We came out stronger for the second half. After the equaliser to make it 2-2, the game could have gone either way. The way we fought back gives me confidence for the coming games. It'll be tough, but doable."

FC Schalke 04 3-2 VfB Stuttgart

Roberto Di Matteo, Schalke: "We started very well, but then had to deal with conceding the equaliser. It was a setback for us against a strong side who posed a real threat on the counter. The second half didn’t get off to a good start. Going 2-1 down rocked us. Luckily, we managed to claw our way back into the game and snatch all three points. The substitutes had a massive say in the outcome. The team kept believing right up until the end. We’re delighted to have won."

Huub Stevens, Stuttgart: "It’s an extremely disappointing defeat. We made mistakes in the opening stages and fell behind. We got more of a foothold in the game afterwards and had opportunities to put the result to bed shortly after going 2-1 up. If you fail to take your chances, you’re always punished. Schalke have a lot of potential and options. They brought on some good players, who decided the game. It’s difficult to pick the lads up and get them ready to go again after a game like today but that’s what we’ll do. I still believe in my team."

1. FSV Mainz 05 1-2 Hamburger SV

Martin Schmidt, Mainz: "It was a very unfortunate incident. We’re hoping that it won’t end Elkin's [Soto] career. You could see the effect it had on the game. Up until then we were playing well, but after that we lost our rhythm. We talked about the injury and wanted to turn the game around for Elkin. We wanted more after equalising, but then threw it away in the 86th minute. We didn't have any reply after that."

Bruno Labbadia, Hamburg: "Firstly we’d like to wish Elkin Soto a good recovery. It was an intense game. We started well, but were lacking that final ball. There were times in the second half when we sat too far back, but then we summoned a huge effort. We rediscovered our belief last week, now we've bolstered it."

Hertha Berlin 1-2 Borussia Mönchengladbach

Pal Dardai, Hertha: "Sometimes you just have to accept that the opposition were the better side. That was the case with Borussia. They played better than us, had more possession and had the better chances. So, from our point of view, it was a fair result."

Lucien Favre, Gladbach: "We had to work hard for the win. We didn’t make things easy for ourselves conceding the equaliser immediately after scoring the early goal. We were back to square one and came up against a very well-organised and compact Hertha side. It was tough to find gaps in their defence, even though we had a few good chances. In the second half we were more patient and upped the tempo. We had more possession, but had to be wary of Hertha on the counter. You could see that we wanted to win the game and in the end it was a deserved victory."