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Schalke 04 - Forever Blue

Started on 7 August 2014 by Raheeminho
Latest Reply on 16 August 2014 by Raheeminho
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September was a big month for us with 6 games being played, an important Champions League group stage match and the second round tie in the German Cup away to Bayer Leverkusen which wasn’t going to be easy.

Schalke 04
3-0 Stuttgart
Howedes x2, Huntelaar

A solid win at home to start off the month. Howedes pounced upon two loose balls in the six yard box from some scrappy defending at set pieces. Klaas was slipped in by Meyer and shot from an audacious angle, the keeper dealt with it badly and palmed the ball into the net. Despite scoring 3 I am still worried where the goals will come from as we didn’t create too many chances and all 3 goals came from very poor mistakes from an average Stuttgart defence.

Mainz 2-1 Schalke 04
Bell (OG)

We took a 1-0 lead as Bell turned the ball into his own net after 11 minutes from a Draxler corner. But he got his revenge as 10 minutes later. Bell came up big to fire a header in from a corner to make it 1-1. The rest of the match was evens until Volland gave away a very dubious penalty in the 85th which they duly dispatched. It was quite a sucker punch as I felt we at least deserved to nick a point. Still my worry of where our goals will come from linger.

Schalke 04 2-0 PSV Eindhoven
Draxler x2

Julian nodded home 2 headers at the back post in the 11th and 15th minutes and the rest of the match was plain sailing from there onwards. I felt we could have capitalized and really pushed on to score 4 or 5 but it wasn’t to be. We defended well and limited their chances to long shots. Good game management from the lads. I’m pleased to get 3 points under our belts.

Schalke 04 3-0 Freiburg
Clemens, Huntelaar, Draxler

A routine home victory for the lads out there. Clemens has been playing out of his skin, assisting both goals against PSV and getting us off to a flyer with a goal in the first minute in this particular match. Klaas scored another great strikers goal as he laid the ball back to Meyer before spinning and being played through on goal. He fired an emphatic left footed drive into the roof of the net and the game was as good as won from then on. Draxler scored yet another header in the 72nd to put the game to bed. Finally we are seeing our goals come from good play.

Bayer Leverkusen 0-1 Schalke 04 (DFB-Pokal)

I really gave Leverkusen a shock here. We’ve been playing attractive fast flowing football all season and I’m sure that’s what they were expecting when they stepped onto that pitch. How wrong they were. I set up with a back 4 which wouldn’t venture forward at all and Neustadter wasn’t going past the halfway line either. We sat deep and didn’t let them get into any pockets of space for the majority of the game. I was looking for one break away from the pace of Volland or Clemens to give us something we could protect but it didn’t seem as though we would score until the 72nd minute. Szalai was brought down in the box and Volland stood up to take the penalty. It was a poor one and Leno pushed the ball away. Maybe today wasn’t our day. But Kevin stayed strong and in the 89th minute he was played through beautifully by young star Leon Goretska who has been phenomenal recently. Volland made no mistake this time finishing with easy to send us into the next round of the cup. Anti-football at it’s finest.

Wolfsburg 1-2 Schalke 04
Huntelaar x2 (1 Pen)

I was thrilled with this result. We went 2-0 up inside the first half and hour and as we did against PSV we defended our lead brilliantly. They pulled back a late consolation but our lead never looked to be broken. Klaas has picked up his scoring form recently which has been a big boost for us scoring 4 in his last 5 matches. We are sitting third in the table following Bayern and HSV closely. But we have a tough 5 matches in late October and early November which could be make or break for the rest of the season.

Raheeminho's avatar Group Raheeminho
9 yearsEdited

October has been one of the worst months in my footballing career. An unmitigated disaster. We haven’t played that awfully, but results and mainly luck have not gone our way.

FK Austria Wein 2-1 Schalke 04 (Champions League)

Another penalty given away by Volland. His second in a few weeks. I was fuming after this match, if we can’t win these we don’t deserve to be in Europe’s top competition and that’s what I told the boys. Huntelaar continued his form with a 70th minute goal but we couldn’t get another. Hitting the woodwork 4 times.

Schalke 04 2-0 Frankfurt
Clemens, Huntelaar

This was better from the lads. Clemens and Huntelaar have been brilliant this season pitching in with vital goals and assists. We desperately needed a win for a boost before the toughest 5 match run I have seen in football.

Dortmund 3-0 Schalke 04

We held on brillianty until yet another penalty was given away on the hour mark. The floodgates opened as we pressed on to score an equalizer which never came. It’s always tough to lose to a rival but it’s even worse when it’s like this

Schalke 04 0-1 Barcelona

We played for 60 minutes with 10 men after Boateng poleaxed Iniesta from behind with a 2 footed lunge. But we were excellent and I mean it, undone by an 86th minute corner which was our only lapse in concentration, Pique the overrated ****. We deserved at least a point. They didn’t get through our defence at all up until then. We could have even won it on the counter if Volland had his shooting boots on.

Schalke 04 1-2 Bayern

To say I was livid with Tim Krul is an understatement. They made it 1-0 just before the break. Volland hit a curling shot into the top corner on the hour mark and we looked to be heading for a point. Until Krul decided it would be fun to go on a wander to the edge of his box as Mandzukic had the ball 35 yards out. The Croatian duly lobbed Tim in the 87th minute and we lost the game. I have no idea what Tim was doing there and no one else does in the world does, I doubt even Tim knows. Realistically, we deserved draws from our two last games but individual errors lead to that not being possible. We need to bounce back and beat Leverkusen again they are underachieving at the moment too. We need to press home our advantage.

Clemens and Papdopoulos Injury Worries for Schalke

Breaking news from the Schalke camp as Papadopoulos and Clemens both pick up injuries.

The imposing Greek defender has had a torrid time with injuries in the past few years. And there has been no change in his luck as news has just come in that the 21 year old is likely to be out for 2 to 3 months with a hip injury. Papadopoulos, who has featured in 14 matches so far this season, will be a big miss as he gives the Schalke defence a bit more physicality which Howedes and Kirchoff don't have in their arsenal. It is expected Kirchoff will make the step up to the first team with Turkish youngster Kaan Ayhan being bought into the substitutes. Santana has been frozen out of the first team squad and is expecte to leave the club shortly.

Pacey winger Christian Clemens has been hit with a 4 to 5 month spell on the side lines as he is suffereing from Knee Tendonitis. The winger, who has scored 4 in 8 starts this season, will be a big miss as the club now only have 2 first team wingers. It is likely they will try and bring in a player on loan in the January transfer window and hold off buying a new player as Leverkusen winger Sidney Sam is has a pre-arranged transfer to Schalke in July of next year.
Rough month here. And the injuries... gosh mate. Hope the squad can rally for ya.

Injuries Pile up for Schalke as Volland is newest Casualty

More bad news for Schalke as in there recent game up against PSV in the Champions League, star winger Kevin Volland who arrived fom Hoffenheim in summer, is out for a spell of up to 5 weeks after sustaining a sprained ankle.

This leaves Schalke with only one first team winger in Julian Draxler. In a system that revolves around wingers new boss at the Veltins, Raul, is going to either going to have to put Max Meyer out on the right or bring in Draxler and play with 2 central attacking midfielders.

Kevin Prince Boateng has also sustained a light injury and is out for around a week.
Raheeminho's avatar Group Raheeminho
9 yearsEdited

Leverkusen 1-2 Schalke 04
Goretska, Huntelaar

We were 1-0 going into halftime after a horrendous bit of miscommunication that allowed Kießling through on goal. I berated the team to do it this for the fans who we have let down recently and we came out with all cylinders firing. A Draxler cross was met by Huntelaar’s header it cannoned back off the post and the young Leon Goretska tapped home the equalizer. Finally the late goal was on the other hand as Meyer split the defence and Huntelaar ran onto the ball and fired into the front post left footed with an 86th minute strike. A great win to lift morale win a tough trip to the Nou Camp later in the week. We restricted them to 1 shot on target whilst we had 7 and also had the majority of the possession, 64%. We truly played them off the park.

Barcelona 4-0 Schalke 04 (Champions League)

Set up for a draw but it wasn’t likely. Once they scored one we were never going to come out with anything. Messi, Neymar and Iniesta just tore us apart and with both first team right backs our injured Ayhan the 18 year old center back was called up to face Neymar. It’s a position I’m looking to strengthen in January as I don’t think Uchida is up to Champions league football.

Schalke 04 2-1 Hertha Berlin
Huntelaar x2

I can see Klaas firing us to Champions league this season. He has been excellent in front of goal and took both his chances with confidence. The first was a well work team goal as Volland played a one two and was played in behind his fullback. Huntelaar arrived late as Volland cut the ball back for it to dimissed into the back of the net nonchalantly by Klaas. He made it 2-0 when Draxler went on a brilliant run beating their midfield before sliding a ball through to Klaas who made no mistake by firing a first time left footed shot into the near post. We saw the game out well but they did score from a corner which is becoming a habit of ours.

Borussia Mogladenbach 1-1 Schalke 04

My first draw as manager of Schalke. To be quite honest, I would have taken one before the game. They were the better side and dominated large suedes of the first half which they won 1-0. The second half however we looked much more potent and we made it count as Huntelaar held up the ball well before playing Volland through on goal who finished well from the edge of the box. Finally Volland is bringing an end product to his game with a few assists and goals. We are sitting in 4th, 3 points behind Mainz in a surprising 3rd place. I have ever confidence that we will make up that gap though.

PSV 0-1 Schalke 04 (Champions League)

This sets up a winner takes all match against FK Austria Wein in the last group match. Thankfully it’s at home so I’m confident we can grab a win. If not then we’ll have to settle with Europa but I won’t take that. These players deserve to be playing in the greatest competition of all. It was a routine victory this one. Volland scored a good goal to continue his good form, but knowing my luck it couldn’t last and now he’s out for 4 to 5 weeks. I’m going to have to alter our formation until he’s back.

Schalke 04 3-0 Braunschweig
Meyer x2, Huntelaar

A great moment for Max Meyer. Since he’s taken Boatengs place in the team a few months ago he’s been tremendous. Picking up 7 assists in his 11 starts. All he needed to add to his game was goals, and here they were. Two great finishes from the 18 year old gave us the lead and Klaas did what he did best and scored a good strikers goal, leaping above their center half and heading home well from a Draxler cross. An easy win in which we played confidently and comfortably.

I’m extremely impressed with the lads this month after a disastrous October they have pulled together and made me proud. We have a DFB-Pokal thrid round match next against Osnabruk the Third Division side. It allows me to rest some players and give a few of the fringe youngsters a run out.
I agree, Fuchs will be great for a season, Ben Davies or Alex Sandro would be good replacements, but there is a lack of decent right backs in the game, Danilo or Rafael are probably the best and neither are cheap.
Start picking up all the points you can get in Europe, because at this point, EL might be a much more realistic target, following the results. Good luck, and what position are you in the BuLi?
Sorry there have been no updates for a few days I've been away in Liverpool over the weekend. I'm back now so expect a few updates today.

December was a solid month for us, we got out of the group stages and have pulled an easier tie against Juventus rather than Real, Bayern etc. Whilst also having a productive league run and a convincing win in the DFB-Pokal.

Osnabrück 0-4 Schalke 04 (DFB-Pokal)
Draxler, Szalai x3

Adam had a great match here, scoring some brilliant goals. Pick of the bunch has to be his third as he was through on goal and deftly executed a chip over the keeper one on one. It’s great to know that we have good depth upfront with Szalai and Volland both capable players then Advijaj as the up and coming star. However we have pulled Bayern away out of the draw so I don’t expect us to do much better than the Quarters this year.

Augsburg 0-2 Schalke 04
Uchida, Goreztka

We dominated, my did we dominate this match. It took us until the 77th minute to finally break the deadlock as Klaas held up the play and put Uchida through who took his chance and nestled the ball into the top corner. Goretzka made the win safe with an 84th minute tap in. He’s really come into his own in the past few matches and is taking Boateng and Hogers spot in the starting XI more often than not.

Schalke 04 1-0 FK Austria Wein (Champions League)

A must win game for us or we’d have been relegated to Europa. They didn’t pose much of a threat and seemingly set up for a draw which is all they needed. However a 34th minute header from the young Leon Goretzka sealed the win as he was the hungriest player and threw himself at it to power the ball home from 8 yards. I’m chuffed we got through the groups as we made it much harder for ourselves than I would have liked. Still a draw against Juventus isn’t going to be an easy one but I think it is doable.

Schalke 04 3-1 Werder Bremen
Fuchs, Kirchoff, Szalai

After going 1-0 down midway into the first half I thought it just wasn’t going to be our day. But a great finish from Fuchs and a Kirchoff tap in on the stroke of half time settled the nerves around the Veltins. Szalai settled the match with a great bit of movement and Hoger duly picked him out, Adam slid the ball into the near post for his first league goal this season.

Hoffenheim 1-1 Schalke 04

Another good run behind the fullback from Fuchs lead to him being played in on goal and he made no mistakes slotting the ball home. We probably should have won the game on paper but they did well to curb our attacks and we a useful unit going forward.

4 wins from 5 is a good turnout from the lads. We defended well only conceding 2 all month. We now have the winter break to have a rest and see which players we can bring in to strengthen the squad. I think new full backs are going to be a priority as Uchida and Fuchs are decent players but fullbacks play a crucial part in our system and they just aren’t up to the standard I want here if we are going to push for trophies and break Bayerns dominance.

Schalke move quickly in January, Signing Serge Aurier

New boss at the Veltins, Raul, has had a successful start to the season finding himself 3rd in the Bundesliga and in the last 16 of the Champions league. Raul had hinted at a making a move for the 21 year old full back in late December and a deal was concluded today.

The Ivorian international has been impressive for Toulouse so far this season which has earned him plaudits all over Europe. Known for his pace and attacking ability Aurier should seamlessly fit into Raul’s system of free flowing attacking football he has become known for.

A deal worth €11m was agreed upon last week and contract negotiations went well with the Ivorian agreeing a €24.5k per week deal with the Gelsenkirchen side up until 2018 earlier this morning.

The Spanish manager is said to be trying to offload Brazilian Santana who has only made 1 appearance so far this season and is said to be letting the player go for free to any club to get him off the wage list with a huge €58k a week salary for sitting in the reserves. Werder Bremen have lodged their interest in the former Dortmund defender.

With the winter break came a chance for me to step back and evaluate the squad here. Aurier has come into the side and is going to be brilliant for us. He’s exactly the type of player I was looking for to replace Uchida who is a capable rotation player but isn’t title winning material. I’m happy with our attack. We have a capable scorer who’s been phenomenal in Klaas, then the 3 youngsters Meyer, Draxler and Volland will be a formidable force if I can manage to keep all three at the club.

We played two friendlies, to keep the players fresh, against Ingolstadt and FC Istres OP and won both 3-0 and 2-1 respectively.

We came back from the break with a tough fixture away to Hamburg.

HSV 2-0 Schalke 04

Not the result I’d have liked but they are in an around the top 3 and were in great form through the backstages of 2013. To use an old cliche, there were plenty of positives to take from the match. We had 63% of the ball and restricted them to 2 chances on target whilst we had 9. Rene Adler got Man of the Match unsurprisingly.

Schalke 04 2-1 Nürnberg
Huntelaar x2 (1 Pen)

Klaas did the business again here scoring within the first 6 minutes and then cooly slotting away a penalty on the 23rd minute mark. They pulled one back on 53 minutes but we never looked like throwing away the lead. All in all a solid win and 3 points to recover from the loss in Hamburg last week.

After this match I went straight back to my office in Gelsenkirchen. I hadn’t got off the phone to Wolfsburg since I left the dressing room. Ricardo Rodriguez was the topic of conversation With the initially say they wanted €26m for the Swiss left back, I bargained down to €17m with €10m up front. Contract negotiations went well and with Santana going to Werder Bremen the day before we had his wages leftover to use up. So Rodriguez was signed with barely an hour left of the window on a €59k a week contract. He’s a player I admire a lot. He’s quick, strong, great on the ball. We looked at Juan Bernat and Alberto Moreno but Ricardo fitted the bill perfectly for us. Some of the media say €17 is too much but it’s not about buying any old player. It’s about buying the right player and I am willing to pay premium if that is the case.

Anyway back to the results.

Schalke 04 3-0 Hannover
Kirchoff, Huntelaar (pen), Howedes

2 goals from corners and a Huntelaar penalty gave us the goals in a comfortable win against relegation candidates Hannover. They didn't look up to it and we duly punished them. After a poor run in late 2013 for Klaas it’s good to see him picking up some goals, albeit from the spot. I’m sure he’ll come back firing soon.

Stuttgart 0-2 Schalke 04
Howedes, Huntelaar

The captain scored another from a corner as we continue to be potent from dead ball situations. Klaas scored for the third consecutive game with a 92nd minute striker to keep his good form up. Rodriguez provided the assist for Klaas with an exquisite cross to the front post. He seems the real deal already.

Raul Looks to the Future as Meyer signs new Contract and Hadzikic Agrees Deal

Meyer, 18, above has had a brilliant breakthrough season at the Veltins.

18 year old wonder kid Max Meyer has been a first team regular for high flyers Schalke this season. Putting in some impressive displays and showing he is ready to make an impact at he highest level already despite his age. Schalke have announced on their website earlier today that Meyer has put pen to paper on a 4 year deal earning him a huge €48.5k a week. The reasoning behind the new contract was to boost the players buy out clause from a previous €25m to an eye watering €60m for the attacking midfielder. With Jurgen Klopp, the new Real Madrid manager, looking to sign the youngster the Spanish manager looked to put the price to a level which was unjustifiable for a player who has played so little.

Schalke have also announced the signing of 18 year old Goalkeeper Osman Hadzikic from FK Austria Wein. The Bosnian youngster will join the Gelsenkirchen club on July 1st as Hildebrands contract is running out at the end of the season and that would only leave 2 senior keepers at the club as we expect Lars Unnerstall to be leaving the club over summer.

Bayern 2-0 Schalke 04 (DFB-Pokal)

I wasn’t particularly fussed about this one, I gave some of the fringe players a match here and I wasn’t surprised to be beaten by a strong Bayern side.

Schalke 04 4-0 Mainz
Kirchoff x2, Draxler, Meyer

Very pleased with the lads here. We dominated from the off, Kirchhoff got us off to a flyer with 2 headed goals within the first 20 minutes. Draxler and Meyer both got on the scoresheet late in the second half to get us a great win to set us up for Tuesday's match against Juventus.

Schalke 04 1-1 Juventus (Champions League)

Juve took the lead within the first 30 seconds as Llorente scored from a corner. We controlled the game and made plenty of chances for ourselves until Klaas finally poked one home from 3 yards. I tried to get us something to go back to Turin and defend but it wasn’t to be as the Italians defended well and got the vital away goal they wanted.

Freiburg 2-2 Schalke 04
Draxler, Boateng

A frustrating draw in hindsight but I would have taken it during the match. They played extremely well and looked potent going forward. Goals midway into either half gave us a point but 3 would have been a big push towards Champions League football after Hamburg slipped up.

Schalke 04 4-0 Wolfsburg
Volland x2, Huntelaar, Meyer

Another convincing win at home in the league. After last weeks frustrating draw it was good to get a 4-0 win under our belts to continue our brilliant home form so far this season. We never look like slipping up at home to mid-table teams which I always think is important. If you win every match at home you only need a few wins and draws away and you’ve won the league. Making the Veltins a fortress is of utmost importance if we want to challenge for the title.

I wouldn’t say it was a great month but some good wins in the league continues our good form. I’d have liked to have gone to Italy with an advantage but we are going to have to go there and take the match to them.

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