Freiburg supporters have plenty of reasons for optimism heading into the new Bundesliga season. The team finished eighth in 2019-20 and are set to move into a new stadium during the upcoming campaign.
Coach Christian Streich has seen some key players leave but investments have been made in the transfer window, and the team look in good shape to finish in the top half once again.
Note: Heavy may earn an affiliate commission if you sign up via a link on this page
Starting with the 2020-21 season, anyone in the US can watch every Freiburg game live on ESPN+:
ESPN+ will have live coverage of every Bundesliga match in 20-21, as well as DFL Supercup, Bundesliga 2, Serie A, FA Cup, Carabao Cup, MLS and other live sports. It also includes every 30-for-30 documentary and additional original content (both video and written) all for $5.99 per month.
Or, if you also want Disney+ and Hulu, you can get all three for $12.99 per month, which works out to about 31 percent savings:
Once signed up for ESPN+, you can watch every Freiburg match live on the ESPN app on your Roku, Roku TV, Amazon Fire TV or Firestick, Apple TV, Chromecast, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, iPhone, Android phone, iPad or Android tablet. Or you can watch on your computer via ESPN.com.
Freiburg 2020-21 Preview
Freiburg have suffered something of a blow ahead of the new campaign. A German court has ruled the club will not be allowed to host Bundesliga matches on Friday nights and Sunday afternoons at their new stadium “due to the expected noise,” according to ESPN’s Stephan Uersfeld.
The decision has not gone down well with the club and came as a surprise. Freiburg executive Oliver Leki said in a statement the “decision is out of all reason.” The club are due to move from Schwarzwald-Stadion during the 2020-21 campaign.
Freiburg's new stadium is getting there… 🏗👀 pic.twitter.com/QH3f7Qp0rV
— Bundesliga English (@Bundesliga_EN) August 24, 2020
Nils Peterson is one Freiburg player who gives supporters plenty to shout about. The 31-year-old is the club’s record goalscorer, and his goals will again prove crucial to the team’s hopes of success.
The striker scored 11 times in 36 games last season and will lead the attack once again along with Lucas Holer.
Peterson has been asked by Bild whether his team can finish eighth again and refused to rule out the possibility but made it clear survival remains Freiburg’s chief aim.
“It is possible. It is of course difficult to say when you are eighth that we want to be 15th now. But of course, first of all we need to have three teams below us. That’ll be hard enough.”
Captain Christian Gunter is another influential figure in the Freiburg starting XI. The left-back has taken over the armband from Mike Frantz and is thrilled to be handed the responsibility.
“Captaining a club that I love will be a great honour for me. I was vice-captain last season and got the chance to captain the side now and again. I’m really pleased that the lads trust me.”
The 27-year-old has been at the club he was 13 and was the only player to feature in every Bundesliga game for Freiburg last season. Gunter is also a handy attacking threat, regularly producing chances for his team-mates from the left flank.
Transfer Ins and Outs
Freiburg have lost some key players ahead of the new season. Defender Robin Koch has been sold to Premier League new-boys Leeds United, while German international Luca Waldschmidt has joined Benfica, and goalkeeper Alexander Schwolow has signed for Hertha Berlin.
Yet the club have been boosted by the arrival of Ermedin Demirovic from Swiss side St Gallen. The 22-year-old will replace Waldschmidt in the squad and is another attacking option for Streich. Demirovic scored 14 times and contributed seven assists in 28 goals last season for St Gallen.
— SC Freiburg (@scfreiburg) July 28, 2020
Dutch midfielder Guus Til has joined on a season-long loan from Spartak Moscow and told the club’s official website he thinks he will fit in well in the Bundesliga.
“I have heard from many people that this is a family club, I would like to be part of it. Moreover, the Bundesliga maintains a fast pace. That suits my playing style. So I did not have to think long about this offer.”
Another player to arrive on loan is goalkeeper Florian Müller. The 22-year-old has signed from Mainz 05 and is likely to start the season as first choice after stopper Mark Flekken suffered an elbow injury in the warm-up against SV Waldhof Mannheim in the DFB-Pokal Cup. Freiburg have confirmed the goalkeeper is out “for the forseeable future.”
Manager: Christian Streich
Charismatic boss Streich took over Freiburg in 2011, making the 55-year-old the Bundesliga’s longest-serving current coach by some distance. There have been plenty of highs and lows during his team with the club too.
Freiburg were relegated to the second division in 2015 after six years in the top flight but decided to keep faith with Streich. Their loyalty was rewarded with a swift return to the Bundesliga and then a seventh-placed finish that brought Europa League football.
Streich guided Freiburg to an impressive eighth place last season, missing out on European football by just a single point, and a similar finish in 2020-21 would do nicely.
Freiburg kick-off the season with a local derby against Stuttgart, who are back in the Bundesliga following promotion last season. Streich will need no reminding the Breisgau-Brasilianer have not beaten their local rivals in the German top flight since all the way back in 2012.
Disclaimer: Heavy Inc. has affiliate relationships with various streaming content providers and may receive a commission if you sign up for a service via a link on this page.