With Werder Bremen facing champions Inter Milan next week in the UEFA Champions League, the wilting team has been read the riot act after they crashed to a second consecutive Bundesliga defeat. Having slumped to a 2-0 home defeat to new Bundesliga leaders Mainz last Saturday, Bremen lost again at Hanover where they were hammered 4-1 on last night and have claimed just four points from five games.
Thomas Schaaf's side face Inter Milan at the San Siro next Wednesday and there have been emergency meetings and harsh words around the Weserstadion.
"With all due respects to the opponent, we shouldn't lose in Hanover, not like that," said Bremen director of sport Klaus Allofs. "We are six point behind where we planned to be at this stage in the season."
Bremen play Hamburg on Saturday in the north Germany derby before flying to Milan for Wednesday's Champions League game before facing Leverkusen back in the Bundesliga again and Allofs is expecting an immediate response.
"We can neither hit the panic button, nor can we just take this lying down," he said. Allofs and coach Thomas Schaaf addressed the players on Wednesday morning and laid down the law in no uncertain terms.
"After the Mainz game, I thought things can't get any worse, but they did," said Allofs. "In the second-half against Hanover, we took leave of our senses. Some of the players completely lost the plot."
Germany midfielder and Bremen captain Torsten Frings has even criticised his team-mates. "Some players worry about themselves too much, in such a way that the team is not their first concern," said Frings. "You can train five times a day, but it is no good, if you aren't ready."
Hanover's Christian Schulz who scored one of the goals, made a damning comment about the state of the Bremen defence after the match. "That was fun football, it was a feast," he said.
Bremen are hoping to welcome back Germany defender Per Mertesacker and Peru striker Claudio Pizarro for Saturday evening's game against Hamburg.
"It is now becoming increasingly difficult for us, because it is also a question of confidence," admitted Frings. "And we are lacking that at the moment, because of the recent games."