Fortuna’s last season was a strange one. They managed to get promoted despite periods of questionable form and a failing defence. When they won the title away at Nürnberg in the last minute of the season, it felt odd. This team had lost ten games in 2. Bundesliga, but still managed to win the league. Had they benefited from the absence of clear Bundesliga-teams in the second tier? Or are they just good enough in attack to make up for that failing defence. This season will most certainly prove whether these statements bear virtue.
Marvin Ducksch has been brought in alongside Kevin Stöger (Bochum) to complete a rather frightening attack. Takashi Usami has been brought in on loan from Augsburg again and the options in attack seem endless for Fortuna. However, there are some clear question matks regarding their defence, which has not been seemingly improved since getting promoted. Will Friedhelm Funkel sort it out as he goes along or will Fortuna fall back into the abyss of oblivion?
Their attack remains their best part. Ducksch and Hennings make up a very interesting duo in attack and are joined by Benito Raman and Takashi Usami on the flanks. It’s quick, technical and oozing with quality. A defensive midfield pivot is made up of newly signed Stöger and Sobottka, with the latter being a real gem in midfield.
The expectations are difficult to state. Bundesliga is a difficult league to predict and no newly promoted team since SC Paderborn has been relegated. Statistics seem to be to Fortuna’s advantage. Their squad is in general good enough to at least put up a fight. Their fate might just be in the hands of Lady Fortuna.
Managerial Background – Friedhelm Funkel
The coach Friedhelm Funkel is a mainstay at Fortuna. He has guided the club through thick and thin, through good times and worse. With resilience and charisma, he has taken Fortuna from the brink of nothingness to the Bundesliga. He’s worthy of a good season in the first division. Fortuna are too. However, Funkel has actually never kept a newly promoted team from being relegated, despite having been in this exact situation on multiple occasions.
Marvin Ducksch from St. Pauli is one of the best signings any Bundesliga-club has made this summer. It’s shrewd business from a club seldom known for just that. Ducksch showed his goal-scoring antics last season at Kiel when he on the Torjägerkanone in Zweite. Kevin Stöger from VfL Bochum is a other great signing that will prove very useful for them.
The expectations are in general probably quite low. Retaining their status as a Bundesliga-club should be the main goals for them and it should be the expectation as well. It will be reachable, but they will need a bit of luck, a bit of help from Fortuna herself.
Strongest XI (4-4-2)
Wolf- Zimmer, Hoffmann, Ayhan, Giesselmann- Lukebakio, Stöger, Sobottka, Raman- Ducksch, Hennings
By Axel Falk.