Werder Bremen and showman Max Kruse keep reality from the door | Andy Brassell

Max Kruse’s hat-trick brought relief at the Weserstadion, but questions over the club’s long-term – and even medium-term – plan remain

“It doesn’t matter who scores the goals,” said Max Kruse on Thursday, and it sounded like he believed it. Yet even if it doesn’t quite mean everything, it means a lot. That much was evident after he retired to the bench a few minutes from the end from Werder Bremen’s emphatic 4-0 win over Hannover on Sunday, their first of the season, having hit a hat-trick – his first goals of the season. Kruse goofed around, whooping and pulling faces at the television cameras. The supporters’ relief was palpable. Not just at the result, but at their star forward taking centre stage again.

Kruse reiterated that idea of the collective afterwards, saying he was “even happier about the team’s performance” than he was about his contribution, and the others certainly put in a shift. Nobody in the Bundesliga, for example, ran more than midfielder Maximilian Eggestein’s 13.4km this weekend.

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