Not much separated 1. FC Heidenheim from the big coup last season. It was only in the relegation against Werder Bremen that the small club from the Ostalb missed promotion to the Bundesliga and will therefore have to be content with league two again in 2020/21. Even if there has been a change in personnel and some top performers left the club, the team of coach Frank Schmidt must be reckoned with again.
In our opinion, the best bookmakers let themselves be too impressed by the performance from the first round in the DFB Pokal before the first match day. There is no other explanation for the fact that Heidenheim is seen only slightly ahead against Braunschweig according to the odds. The Red-Blue have more experience at this level and were already one of the strongest home teams in the 2nd Bundesliga last year.
The fact that up to 3,000 spectators can find their way into the Voith Arena on Sunday for the first time in a long time increases the home side’s role as favorites. Although BTSV eliminated Bundesliga Hertha BSC (5: 4) from the cup last weekend, while 1. FCH disappointed across the board in the bankruptcy against third division side Wehen-Wiesbaden, the omens on Sunday afternoon are different.
1. FC Heidenheim had a good two months to shake the missed promotion to the Bundesliga out of their clothes in the relegation. During this period, a lot has happened at the friendly club from the Ostalb. With Dorsch, Kleindienst or Griesbeck, three absolute key players answered the wake-up calls from higher-class clubs. An important axis of the successful team from the previous year has thus broken away and it could well take a while before a new hierarchy is created.
The fact that this process can, however, also be accelerated under certain circumstances, is due to the fact that Frank Schmidt, currently the longest-serving coach in German professional football, is an outstanding coach on the bench at the 1st FCH who manages it year after year, a collective that is uncomfortable to play on and has the chance to score three points against any competitor.
Last season, for example, the Red-Blue won eleven of their 17 home games and only suffered two defeats. The 13 goals conceded and the 32 goals scored also corresponded to outstanding values in the second division comparison.
Despite the well-known departures and the disappointing performance in the previous week against Wehen-Wiesbaden (0: 1), there is an interesting value in the tip for the home win between Heidenheim and Braunschweig. On the one hand, because the prices are surprisingly high. On the other hand, because in our opinion the bookmakers underestimate the previous year’s third in the lower house against a climber too much. Hüsing, Thomalla and Burnic will not be available due to injury.
There were also fundamental changes at Eintracht from Braunschweig in the summer. In contrast to the opponent from Heidenheim, the lions, for example, filled the post of coach. Promotion coach Marco Antwerp was not allowed to continue, instead, Daniel Mayer, a colleague who was highly valued in the scene, was hired, who had already done a good job at Erzgebirge Aue and was relieved of his duties early due to internal discrepancies.
The 41-year-old is now faced with the challenging task of keeping the BTSV in the second division in the first step and establishing it there in the second step. Despite some exciting newcomers, the newcomer’s squad is qualitatively weaker than that of the red and blue. In terms of experience, too, the host has the advantage, so that before the duel Heidenheim vs. Braunschweig a forecast on the Schmidt-Elf is closer.
The Lower Saxony tanked a lot of self-confidence last Friday. At the start of the competitive game, the yellow-blue team surprisingly prevailed 5: 4 against Bundesliga club Hertha. The result did not come about after extra time or penalty shoot-out, but actually after regular playing time, which briefly and concisely depicts the strengths and weaknesses of the former first division club.
Since we believe that the home side will play a controlled football on Sunday and not give the Lions as many spaces to counter as the “old lady” did, we would refrain from the odds of an away win between Heidenheim and Braunschweig. The 1st FCH is rightly favored and has a good chance of starting the game year with a sense of achievement. Martin Kobylanski, who recently tied a three-pack against Berlin, is of course hopeful for the newcomer.