“My heart will always be Green-White”

Double interview with Anthony Ujah and Felix Kroos
Felix Kroos and Anthony Ujah still sympathise with Werder (Photo: nordphoto).
interview
Monday, 29.06.2020 / 20:20

Lauded by the Werder fans as if they were the 12th and 13th man at the wohninvest WESERSTADION on Saturday: Anthony Ujah and Felix Kroos. The former Werder duo celebrated a 3-0 win with 1. FC Union Berlin against SVW’s direct competitors Düsseldorf, with Ujah scoring the opener on the day. Werder fans have heaped praise onto the two players over the past few days.

The two players look back to the weekend and tell us the connection they still have to the Weser.

WERDER.DE: Hello Toni, hello Felix. You were able to really help SV Werder with a victory on Saturday. Did you speak to any Werder players before the game?

Anthony Ujah: “I didn’t talk to any of the players before the game. But there were lots of messages from Werder fans in the week leading up to the game. It felt as if my phone was pinging ever hour. I also had people asking to interview me, but I declined because I wanted to focus completely on the game. Nevertheless, I was thinking about Werder the whole week and I’m happy that it worked out this way.”

Felix Kroos: “It was a bit different for me. I spoke to ‘Bargi’ on the phone straight after the game against Mainz. I then spoke to Fin Bartels via text about an hour before kick-off. I also spoke with one of the coaches, Tim Barten. It was nice to hear from my old teammates, but I was already motivated from the start.”

Ujah: “I saw right away that the ball was in”

Felix Kroos and Anthony Ujah played together at Werder (Archive photo: nordphoto).

WERDER.DE: You were both extremely motivated for the game, but so were all of your teammates. What gave you the incentive?

Anthony Ujah: “Felix and I tried to motivate the team, but the coach also wanted us to make a perfect end to the season. We’ve had a great season, which we wanted to crown with a win. It feels really good to go into the holidays with a win, both for us, the Union fans and also for Werder.”

Felix Kroos: “It’s no big secret that I will always have Green and White in my heart. I played here for six years and always felt completely at home. You never forget that. We also wanted to show that we have great character as a team. Furthermore, every Bundesliga match and every win is something special for us.”

WERDER.DE: Toni, you scored the opening goal against Düsseldorf. What was going through your head?

Anthony Ujah: “I took the ball forward and shot through the legs of the goalkeeper. I was in a good position and could see straight away that the ball was in. So I instantly started celebrating and didn’t have to wait for the referee’s decision. Afterwards I thought of Werder straight away. It wasn’t quite as emotional as it was against Frankfurt, but nevertheless I was really happy. Then when I heard the score in Bremen at half time, I knew it was down to us.”

I only spent one year in Bremen, but it was the best season of my career.
Anthony Ujah

WERDER.DE: You must have also heard the score at half time, Felix?

Felix Kroos: “Yes, exactly. I heard at half time that Werder were 3-0 up. Even after the first goal I thought that we had just taken the first step towards a miracle. Honestly. The fact that they had a three-goal lead at the break, and I believed that Werder would score a fourth, a draw would have been enough. It’s definitely a nice feeling to have played our part.”

WERDER.DE: What does SV Werder still mean to you both?

Felix Kroos: “An incredible amount. It’s the time where I became a man, even if others disagree with that (laughs). I met some great people, played my first few Bundesliga matches, I played in the Champions League; it just worked. I’m closest to Philipp Bargfrede, but I have also never lost contact with Fin, Boro and Clemens. I also met my wife in Bremen. So my heart will always be Green-White, and Bremen feels like home to me. We will definitely go back there some time.”

Anthony Ujah: “I only spent one year in Bremen, but it was the best season of my career. Not because of the 14 goals I scored, but because of everyone in Bremen. The atmosphere there is one of a kind. Even though we spent the whole season fighting relegation in 2015/16, the fans always stayed positive. That was new and unusual for me. My family also enjoyed their time in Bremen, which is why I got lots of messages from Africa, telling me I had to help Werder.”

Four fingers are crossed

Felix Kroos and Florian Kohfeldt know each other from their time together at SVW (Photo: nordphoto).

WERDER.DE: Did you speak to any of your former teammates after the game?

Felix Kroos: “I wasn’t expecting anything, but I was happy to receive so many messages after the game. They even came from some Werder legends. Clemens, Per Mertesacker, Boro and Florian Kohfeldt all got in touch. And of course all of the messages from the fans, which was amazing. I still haven’t worked my way through all of them yet, but I will read every single message.”

Anthony Ujah: “I spoke to Theo and told him that I was happy about both wins. Overall I received so many messages that my phone almost ran out of charge. I will no­w cross my fingers for Werder in both their play-off games.”

WERDER.DE: And how will you watch the games, Felix?

Felix Kroos: “I will watch the game at home in my apartment in Berlin. Anyone who knows me, will know that I have to be in silence when I watch important matches. No one can talk to me.”

 

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