Sinsheim – 111 Bundesliga goals make Kevin Kuranyi one of the top-scorers currently plying their trade in the German top-flight, yet you would have to go back more than five years to find his last.
Since netting for FC Schalke 04 in a 2-1 defeat to FC Bayern München on 3 April 2010, Kuranyi has failed to find the back of the net in the Bundesliga. What would sound like a colossal drought for a striker does have an explanation – he has not been playing in the Bundesliga for five years – yet three games into his comeback, that drought is nevertheless going on longer than he would have hoped.
'The league table's going to look much better'
Indeed, it is now eight Bundesliga games in a row that the former German international has been waiting for a goal, but he is intent on using the latest international break to ensure he makes up for lost time once the action gets underway again.
"I am almost at 100 percent, and I aim to get there during the break," he told achtzehn99.de. "I'm feeling good and got my first 90 minutes under my belt and now this international break comes at a good time for me to prepare myself intensively."
That preparation is for Hoffenheim's next game against SV Werder Bremen on 13 September, when his and Hoffenheim's season should really get off the ground. "It's a pity we've not picked up more points than we have, although we've had chances," added the 33-year-old. "But results are one thing, what we've done out on the field is another.
Bundesliga 'something special'
"I'm confident that we're going to get what we want from our coming games, and then the league table's going to look much better for us." He says that with a smile that has adorned his face ever since reliving the Bundesliga experience as a player – something of a culture shock even for someone who had spent seven years in Germany's top flight before moving to Russia.
"The moment when you walk out into a sell-out stadium is definitely something special," Kuranyi said. "You don't get that in Russia. It's also a nice feeling when you play well with a young team against sides like Bayern or Leverkusen. For me and my family, exactly the right thing has happened [by coming back to Germany]."