WOLFSBURG'S FIGHT-BACK SAVES MCCLAREN'S JOB
A SECOND-HALF recovery not only salvaged Wolfsburg a point in a 2-2 draw with Hoffenheim but also saved coach Steve McClaren's job.
An emotional half-time team talk from the English coach and a severe dressing down from their own fans did the trick as Wolves recovered from two goals down to snatch a point in the last minute and save McClaren from the axe.
“Of course I was having doubts in the first half,” the club's managing director, Dieter Hoeness, admitted. “But the reaction in the second half was clear. The team never gave up and that is an important criterion.”
McClaren said he had told the players to make up their minds at half-time: “I told my players 'either you just let your heads drop or you fight',” he said. “They chose to fight and that was good for me.”
Defender Marcel Schafer confirmed that McClaren's half-time team talk did the trick, saying: “He found the right words. Of course it got a bit noisy, but up to then our game had been catastrophic. After the break, we showed what we have in us. We can get out of this together.”
Nevertheless, the pressure is still on McClaren, whose side has not won now for seven matches. It faces Energie Cottbus in the DFB-Pokal in midweek and anything less than a win could prompt a rethink regarding his future.