Aron Johannsson frustrated by lack of game time at Werder Bremen
United States international Aron Johannsson has voiced his frustrations at being frozen out at Werder Bremen.
Despite Bremen's troubles in the Bundesliga, which have seen them score only three goals in nine games and drop into the relegation zone without a win, Johannsson's time on the pitch has been limited to only three minutes this season.
With Bremen hoping to offload Johannsson in the summer, they put him in the shop window in a late-August match against Hoffenheim, but since then head coach Alexander Nouri has preferred not to call on him.
"I've scored goals and set them up throughout my career," Johannsson told reporters. "I know that I could help. But it's difficult when the coach does not believe in me."
Johannsson has struggled to adapt to the Bundesliga since his move to Bremen from AZ Alkmaar in 2015. Following a promising start, a hip injury caused him to miss a major part of his first season.
He returned to fitness in the autumn of 2016, but in 2017 he has only played a total of 53 minutes across four games.
Johannsson said that he had volunteered to play in Bremen's under-23 side, but the club did not take him up on the offer.
"I have asked many times if I could play in the U23s," he said. "I'd be in better form should I get a chance with the first team, but they said no."
Johannsson said he was surprised about the reasons the club gave him given 34-year-old Rafael Kaizor has featured for the U23s.
"They told me they would rather play the young guys," he said. "But now they don't even play there."
But when asked about a potential transfer in the winter, Johannsson, who is under contract until 2019, said: "I've said many times that I want to prove my worth here and play for Werder. I hope I get a chance soon."
Stephan Uersfeld is the Germany correspondent for ESPN FC. Follow him on Twitter @uersfeld.