Beck aiming for Europe
Hoffenheim captain Andreas Beck believes his side will be playing in Europe next season.
His team ended the first half of the season in eighth position, just four points adrift of fifth-placed Bayern Munich.
Beck believes his side have let slip more than just four points along the way this season and that the aim must now be to make up for them in the second half of the campaign to qualify for Europe for the first time in the club's history.
"We played a pretty decent first half of the season, but we don't have enough points to show for it when I think of our games with Dortmund, Wolfsburg and against Nurnberg and Bayern," he told Kicker magazine.
"Nevertheless, our position is good and it now depends on how we deal with it. We are within touching distance of the top and have a safe distance below us. We could make it into Europe because we are aware of our strengths, but everything has got to come together."
Should Hoffenheim collapse like they did in their first Bundesliga season, which they led at the midway stage of the campaign only to finish eighth, they would still have the DFB-Pokal as a potential route into Europe. They have been drawn against second division side Energie Cottbus in the quarter-finals.
"Without a doubt it is the quickest route into Europe," added Beck. "We just need two more wins and we are already in [the final in] Berlin. However, we must not under-estimate Cottbus. They showed what they are capable of against Wolfsburg, but our aim has got to be to reach the semi-finals for the first time."
And the more matches Beck gets to play, the more chances he has of convincing Germany coach Joachim Low that he deserves a recall to the national team. "That was always my dream and my goal," he said. "It would certainly be helpful if Hoffenheim were playing in Europe. Qualifying for Europe would give me another big boost."