Wiese not to blame - Babbel

BY foxsports • September 17, 2012

Hoffenheim coach Markus Babbel has defended Tim Wiese after watching his goalkeeper concede 15 goals in the first four games of the season.

Babbel came in for criticism from supporters over the summer when he signed Wiese from Werder Bremen and sold fans' favourite Tom Starke to Bayern Munich.

The backlash intensified following Sunday's 5-3 Bundesliga defeat to Freiburg - Hoffenheim's fourth straight defeat - but Babbel says the Germany international is not the sole culprit for his side's early-season woes.

"Enough already - that is not the problem," Babbel said when asked if Wiese was to blame. "We should have scored five or six goals.

"What annoys me the most are the two set-pieces. We had numerous chances which we did not use.

"When I see the way [Freiburg forward Cedric] Makiadi is stood there all alone, that is totally unnecessary. We have got to get rid of these silly little mistakes."

Those mistakes have led to Hoffenheim losing every competitive game they have played this term - yet, as Babbel acknowledged, it could have been even worse.

"In the end, we have got to be happy that we did not lose by a greater margin," he continued. "We could easily have conceded a sixth or seventh goal."

Freiburg coach Christian Streich was happy that a gamble had paid off, on the other hand, as they picked up their first win of the season after changing to a more attacking system.

"We decided that we will take a big risk against Hoffenheim, and you can see that a bit in the result," he said.

"We were the lucky ones in the end. The team played courageously and the result is nice."