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West Bromwich Albion
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By ESPN Staff

Hannover 96 v Fortuna Düsseldorf: Preview

Fortuna Dusseldorf coach Norbert Meier has been given a vote of confidence ahead of his side's crucial final day encounter with Hannover tomorrow.

Without a win in their last 11 games, in which they have picked up just three points, Fortuna find themselves level on points with Augsburg, who occupy third bottom in the table.

They even risk automatic relegation to the second division if they lost in Lower Saxony and both Augsburg and Hoffenheim's results do not go their way.

However, even if they finish in 16th, and face a play-off with Kaiserslautern for a berth in the top flight next season, Meier's five-year reign in charge will continue, according to the club's chairman Paul Jager.

``Changing coach right now would be senseless,'' he told Kicker magazine. ``Of course we are going to continue with Norbert Meier, even in the play-offs.''

In order to prepare in the best possible way for tomorrow's decisive match, Meier took his team away for several days into a cloister.

``It's really not all that bad for us as a team not to see all the negative things being written about us,'' said defender Jens Langeneke at a press conference.

``We're trying to block everything out. I'm ready for us to turn things around in Hannover.''

The stakes are not so high for the hosts, whose hopes of a third straight season in Europe were ended several weeks ago.

Konstantin Rausch, who will be joining Stuttgart in the summer, says he wants to leave having given the supporters another win to celebrate.

``We want to play a decent game because we owe that to the fans,'' he said on his club's website. ``We want to win for sure.

``It is not about helping somebody out in their relegation battle, we are playing for ourselves. We are taking the game absolutely seriously and want to end the season with a win.''


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