Hoogland makes Mainz pledge
Mainz skipper Tim Hoogland maintains he will play again for the club despite being ruled out for three months.
By Thomas Zocher
Last Updated: 09/02/10 8:06pm
Mainz skipper Tim Hoogland maintains he will play again for the club despite being ruled out for around three months.
The 24-year-old full-back, who has agreed to return to hometown club Schalke in the summer, was substituted in the first half of Mainz's 1-0 win over Borussia Monchengladbach on Sunday.
Hoogland now requires surgery and despite original fears that he will miss the remainder of the season, the German has reassured Mainz fans he has already set a target for his return.
"I am of the opinion I will be able to play a few matches more this season. The match against Frankfurt at the end of April would be a good moment to return," he said.
"At first I believe I will be out for eight weeks, but I will know more after the surgery then. There are several pains I feel, but looking at the circumstances I am rather fine."
Surprise package Mainz are 13 points clear of the Bundesliga relegation zone and Hoogland admits the side are beginning to sense safety with 36 the typical figure to guarantee safety in Germany's top flight.
"It is a pity not to be able to help the team, but the victory over Monchengladbach was a valuable step towards safety," said the former Germany Under-21 international.
"We are now banking on 30 points already, those six points missing to feel not just theoretically safe will definitely be won by the team in the process. I am sure of this."
Hoogland, who has a healthy return of six goals this season, joined Schalke as a 13-year-old before leaving for Mainz in 2007.
The right-back has since signed a pre-contract agreement with his former club to return to the Veltins-Arena on a free transfer after impressing with his current club.