Dieter Hecking and all of 96 welcome back Robert Enke from his superb international play for Germany. Now the club must focus on efforts on old foe Bremen and the threat of relegation. Still looking for the first win of the year away from Niedersachsenstadion, the Nordderby has not been kind to Hannover. The goal differential in the previous four matches has represented a complete dominance by Bremen and therefore defending is key.
Dieter Hecking made no doubt of this in his pre-match press conference on 96 TV ensuring that Christian Schulz will be in the interior defense ("Christian Schulz wird definitiv in der Innenverteidigung spielen"). Albanian international Altin Lala will be given the responsibility to keep Bremen play-maker Diego under control.
Bremen season has been inexplicably poor this year but Thomas Schaaf is anxious to salvage the year with a good wrap-up in the Bundesliga and in the UEFA Cup. He has a full squad available, excluding Daniel Jensen. Dieter Hecking once again has a long list of absentees as Jan Schlaudraff, Michael Tarnat, Frank Fahrenhorst, Vinícius, Steven Cherundolo, Valérien Ismaël are all out along with Chavdar Yankov who is doubtful.
Injuries aside, there is nothing like a Nordderby to bring out the best.