FC Schalke 04 vs Werder Bremen
The Everton full-back performed a minor miracle in his last outing when "Die Königsblauen" were beaten narrowly 2-1 at Fortuna Duesseldorf with a brilliant piece of rearguard action when the Schalke goalie went walkabout and got easily beaten out wide.
The defender couldn't prevent Schalke's third successive defeat, however, as Bremen ran out 1-0 winners to ease their relegation fears.
Reader Comments (51)
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1 Posted 30/05/2020 at 13:44:54
Werder's Davy Klaassen had a tremendous cross-pass assist last week. He appears to have re-found his form there. Having been made captain is a sign of this.
But to be clear: we should never have bought him. Not with Rooney and Sigurdsson being acquired too.
2 Posted 30/05/2020 at 14:15:53
Teamsheets should be available...
3 Posted 30/05/2020 at 14:19:19
FC Schalke 04
23 Gebre Selassie
4 Posted 30/05/2020 at 17:15:38
5 Posted 30/05/2020 at 17:35:48
6 Posted 30/05/2020 at 22:42:50
7 Posted 31/05/2020 at 04:33:03
There is virtually no atmosphere, I get the impression that most players are just going through the motions, because let's face it, most footballers have egos and are showmen. They don't want to 'perform' to an empty Stadium, but are contractually obliged to.
Having said all that, I am not looking forward to the reconvening of the Premier League, again behind closed doors. The media are having a field day at the moment, but to hear them you would think Liverpool's next game was at Anfield, the way they are going on about clinching the title, as if it's a foregone conclusion, and crowds gathering outside to celebrate.
As I believe most flights have been grounded, so how can there be crowds, when Scandinavians, and other far-flung support will be in their own countries?
8 Posted 31/05/2020 at 06:10:34
9 Posted 31/05/2020 at 08:14:46
I said elsewhere Mike, I always saw a player in Klaassen. Unfortunately he wasn't a good fit for the Premier League, or didn't get time to settle.
In fairness, he also wasn't helped by a particularly turbulent time and possibly one of the most disjointed transfer "policies" I've seen. We had just signed the captain of a very good Ajax team.
Recalling our summer 2017 transfer "strategy", it felt as though Koeman, Walsh & Kenwright all went to the shops without agreeing what they needed!
Ronald came back with Klaassen & Sigurdsson, Bill went with his heart & brought back "our Wayne" whilst Walsh got Keane & Pickford. Right, let's put this lot on the pitch and see what happens. Some strategy!
In fairness, maybe Davy is better suited to the Dutch & German leagues. Still fairly physical but players do get more time on the ball in general. He was, as you say, very effective yesterday.
10 Posted 31/05/2020 at 09:54:44
These are professional footballers who have spent literally years and years training and playing football in front of few if any people. That's how they honed their skills. That's how they spend most days of each and every week. They yearn to play. They probably don't fancy the training so much, but it is essential to honing and maintaining their skills and ability.
I would venture that there is nothing more they would want to be doing right now than playing football. And watching those players at the Veltins yesterday, there is absolutely no way that they were just 'going through the motions'. Sorry, but I just don't buy that.
They have got to get back into action. The cessation of all life due to the culture of fear generated by the media through this lockdown mentality and the paranoia over not having a vaccine has to come to an end at some point. In the meantime, playing behind closed doors seems to be a sensible compromise.
There is a risk – life abounds with risk. There has to be a better balance moving forward. Let's stop feeding the paranoia and start moving forward again.
11 Posted 31/05/2020 at 10:10:15
They probably don't fancy the training so much, but it is essential to honing and maintaining their skills and ability, hilarious!
12 Posted 31/05/2020 at 10:44:36
I am sure we would all like to get back to normal as soon as possible, but with 6 million people already having died from Coronavirus I can well understand the anxiety felt. Maybe if we had have had the same leaders as New Zealand and South Korea and quite a few others, we may have been able to return to some sort of normality.
Just to give you an idea of how other European countries are faring with the coronavirus these are the death rates from these countries on the 29 May:
13 Posted 31/05/2020 at 10:50:06
Of course players want fans, they want the atmosphere, but I think we should also remember how they spend their careers conditioning themselves to zone out and focus on the pitch and game. All of us who have played will have done similar at our respective levels.
When I played, I was rarely conscious of what was going on around me when I walked on the pitch, just focussed. Obviously not focussed enough on too many occasions hence me not hitting those levels!!!
14 Posted 31/05/2020 at 11:48:52
Re the match. I couldn't watch it but I like Klaassen and always hoped he would work out ok for us. How was he in this match? As ineffective as he was for us? Or is his manager using him better?
15 Posted 31/05/2020 at 12:36:39
16 Posted 31/05/2020 at 12:45:51
Do you think having no fans at the game is affecting Schalke, Danny? I ask because you say they are like Everton, and I'm pretty certain it's our home form which has kept us in the top league on a few occasions over the seasons.
I'd be looking to play a couple of the younger players in these games because they are not used to playing in front of big crowds and therefore won't suffer from a lack of motivation that is definitely going to affect a lot of senior pros.
17 Posted 31/05/2020 at 12:50:09
18 Posted 31/05/2020 at 13:10:06
As you know from previous articles, I have loosely followed them for years and, in recent years, make at least one trip a season to the Veltins. The fans are very important to Schalke and they have a genuine bond that you don't get with every club.
It is derived from their strong working-class roots and sense of being part of the community rather than international fame, being fashionable or media darlings, so it is as deep-rooted and passionate as I've seen.
There have been other factors though. The goalkeeper situation didn't help. They had Nuebel in for the first half of the season and first couple of games after the break. But there was a proper fallout following him agreeing to sign for Bayern and leaving in the summer as he is seen as the successor to Neuer (also a Schalke academy product!).
Although Neubel was re-called yesterday, which made a difference (no keeper was stopping that shot), Shubert, who most of you will have seen these past few weeks, has been a liability. They also lost Sedar to injury last week, who is a highly rated midfielder. And they clearly are toothless up-front. Finally, they've made the wrong call with the manager and arguably, this was inevitable, masked by the good start.
I think that was a long-winded way of saying "yes, but there are other factors too", Tony!!!
Bang on with the youngster piece. Makes total sense as, like you say, they won't be as affected by the lack of crowd; if anything, it keeps the pressure off them and they can go and enjoy the game. Sounds obvious, but too many players go out worrying too much about the result. Enjoy the game, focus on your performance and most times, the result will come.
If not, you done everything you could and simply got done by a better team on the day (VAR, Ref, sheer luck aside!!). Focus too much on the result and it induces tension and fear; that's how players freeze or end up doing something rash.
19 Posted 31/05/2020 at 13:26:24
Your point is valid though - we're still getting an estimated 8,000 new cases a day here in the UK, which is a lot more than any of the other European countries that are emerging from lockdown. Assuming lockdown is the reason for the curve heading downwards rather than the natural progression of a virus, then it does seem we're a bit premature in dropping some of the restrictions.
20 Posted 31/05/2020 at 13:37:14
Yes, sorry, I should have said 6 million cases, not deaths. I was just trying to point out that other countries had much lower death rates and new cases. Where we are now leading the world in deaths per head of population.
This government were weeks too slow going into lockdown and, according to scientists, weeks too early coming out of lockdown.
21 Posted 31/05/2020 at 13:56:10
But, national comparisons are not always accurate, especially based on black & white death figures. The UK is actually 3rd per head of population, behind Belgium & Spain. And then there's the factor of how countries record, which can further skew comparisons. Some, like the UK, record all deaths if Covid-19 appears on the certificate, even if it was "a" cause, not "the" cause (eg, they had terminal cancer or serious heart disease). Others only record if it caused the death. Others (like Russia) are probably lying and covering up. Too many variables to make true comparisons. Most countries, bar one or two, have followed similar curve patterns. It's a global pandemic after all.
Anyway, I'd rather not do the politics on here. As Michael said above, we need to come out of this and should want to. Football restarting should be one of those "light at then of a dark tunnel" moments that gives us all hope, even without the fans (for now).
22 Posted 31/05/2020 at 14:13:24
End lockdown, open the pubs, protect the vulnerable.
That should have been the only message on the podium.
23 Posted 31/05/2020 at 14:43:48
24 Posted 31/05/2020 at 15:22:06
It's horrible to draw this into statistics as ultimately people have died. But the schools returning debate; I read today that in the UK, tragically, 2 people under the age of 15 have died potentially as a result of Covid-19. That means that theoretically an under 15-year-old is 4 times more likely to be struck by lightning.
Time and again we have been told the young are most unlikely to be affected, yet it's not safe for them to return to school?
25 Posted 31/05/2020 at 15:58:59
We've been told that children don't die of it. They can certainly get it according to ONS research.
The key stat now will be the transmission rate, and if there's any impact from this relaxation we will see it before the end of June, which is apparently when the test, trace and isolate regime may become fully operational according to the lady running it now.
Currently, the last rate I saw for London was 0.4. If the overall figure is between 0.7/0.9 someone somewhere is a lot higher than that. This is borne out by the rate of new infections daily which is twice as high in the North as in the South, apparently.
So let life unfold!
26 Posted 31/05/2020 at 16:00:32
27 Posted 31/05/2020 at 16:18:24
I'm totally comfortable with a phased approach both in time and geography. It works in other countries and, bringing it slightly back on track, Germany is a good example with its 16 states, all of whom have their own regional parliaments.
Tony â€“ yes, you can see the players are getting back to normal. It's like they're gradually coming out of pre-season and in fairness, that was on the back of the mid-season break they usually have in the Bundesliga anyway.
28 Posted 31/05/2020 at 16:26:22
And to their credit, there has been some protection of the vulnerable. My oldest sister was put on a list by her doctor 'cos she has a history of lung disease, and gets food delivered to her home. But in the long run, individuals should really be responsible for their own safety and the risks they take.
Danny #21, if you want to use deaths per population stats, then surely San Marino and Andorra are more seriously fucked than UK or Spain?
29 Posted 31/05/2020 at 16:36:08
I genuinely hope your sister is okay.
30 Posted 31/05/2020 at 16:44:42
If you base your conclusions on that number alone tiny San Marino with just 42 total deaths is WAAYYY ahead of the rest of the world with 1,238 deaths per million.
Even the national total deaths can be misleading because within particular large countries high, but widely dispersed populations - like the USA and Brazil - you have hotspots and epicentres.
If you take the national figure for Brazil with its 205 million population, its 29,000 deaths returns a 'low' 136 deaths per million. But then when I calculate the mortality rate for my own state of 8 million people with 2,700 deaths that leaps to 338 per million.
That is an example of what I mean, that there can be big regional differences within a single nation.
Whilst Brazil sits in 22nd place in rankings for deaths per million population, my state alone if it were a nation would get into the top 10 globally. Similarly, my state sits in the top 20 globally, ahead of Switzerland, for its number of total deaths.
This has been an awful week for Brazil. All the concerns I have expressed for the country are very much coming home to roost.
We are returning 1,000 deaths a day, racing pass Spain and France into fourth place globally for total deaths.
Given all the conditions in Brazil, for the first time in my life I have a sense that I am witnessing at close quarters the complete collapse of a state.
Keep your eye on my adopted country. Things are about to get very, very messy.
EDIT: Chris @ 25. I only saw your post after having written and posted this one. You highlight the same thing as I do, that within a nation even as small as the UK, there are considerable differences in rates and numbers by region.
That's why executive decisions in this situation should be best left to regional powers in the know, rather than a centralised national agency making calls that aren't necessarily applicable to all.
31 Posted 31/05/2020 at 16:56:34
It's an appalling situation in Brazil, and getting a fucking sight worse, as you say. Take good care of yourself and your wife and family.
There was an interesting piece comparing the performance of countries like Brazil, US, Russia, etc all ruled by duplicitous Populist macho men. All not doing so well, and in some cases, getting worse. There were also India, Hungary and Turkey included from memory.
I don't think they included the Uk, or at least England as it is increasingly looking!
32 Posted 31/05/2020 at 16:58:02
Some of these players will have just had their first proper rest in years, and that's why I found it funny when Michael, said what he did about the training.
Once the first couple of sessions are out of the way, they will be like little kids again, and the only fear they might have is in playing their first couple of games.
I'm sure they will all deem their own training grounds to be the safest environment, especially until they get used to and over the little doubts they might have of the small risk involved in starting to play competitively again.
I say small risk, because I'm certain that is what it is to a young, fit and healthy professional sportsman, but I can definitely understand the concerns of the players who are obviously worried about others.
33 Posted 31/05/2020 at 18:29:45
Boys From The Blackstuff, Auf Wiedersehen Pet, and several other Bleasdale shows. Brilliant.
Started life in The Liver Birds.
Feels a long time ago.
34 Posted 31/05/2020 at 23:53:17
Yes, there are going to be doubts and concerns and that is understandable, but like you say, I think most (all) will just be feeling good about getting back to some kind of normality.
35 Posted 01/06/2020 at 00:05:01
36 Posted 01/06/2020 at 06:58:05
And I agree on the government also.
Thanks for the best wishes.
37 Posted 01/06/2020 at 08:01:16
Regarding the mortality figures in the UK.
Since the peak started, there are about 16,000 â€˜excess deaths' as yet unidentified as to cause. In addition, there has also been a large spike in deaths solely attributed to Dementia and Alzheimer's. Both of these are being investigated further by ONS to establish if there is any link to this virus.
Their next update is tomorrow, and the deaths related to Covid-19 are likely to be of the order of 55,000, once the corresponding figures for Scotland and Northern Ireland are factored in, and the ONS figures are not even up to date.
It could be that the deaths in this country related to the virus are being under-reported, but time will tell perhaps. The ONS figures are flagged â€˜provisional', so are likely to change in any case.
This doesn't take into account â€˜the collateral damage' of untreated cancer patients etc and associated deaths, which is also starting to emerge more fully.
38 Posted 01/06/2020 at 08:11:26
I have been watching the Bundesliga since the restart and the teams have gotten used to the strange situation of empty stadiums. It helps a bit in terms of the interest levels if it's your team playing or a rival but, in general, it's boring to watch. However the level of football has not changed much, only notable change is the many away wins.
Jonjoe Kenny was again average in a poor team; both he and Schalke are uninspiring right now. Klaassen is doing okay in a Werder Bremen team who are starting to find a bit of form, but the style and pace here suits him better than in England.
And Ademola Lookman got another chance to ''shine'' this week and managed to give away a stupid late penalty to cost Leipzig 2 points. He has lost his way here, I'm afraid.
Bayern will stroll to the finishing line again, Dortmund are missing the winner's instinct. So only the battle against relegation will be of interest once more in Deutschland.
Stay safe everyone.
39 Posted 01/06/2020 at 09:04:03
40 Posted 01/06/2020 at 09:29:02
Three doctors from different areas talked about what was happening, all of them sounded so young. It sounded like southern Brazil was coping better and was bettered governed. Another talked about ordinary people in the favelas using vacated schools to help isolate people. Meanwhile, the Fascist in charge ignores it. Sounds, too, as though the real death toll is monumentally higher than published.
Meanwhile, either a column or letter in one of our newspapers (the Telegraph possibly) makes the jaw-dropping argument that Bolsonara has got it right. Take care.
41 Posted 01/06/2020 at 11:25:23
A stupid buy if Koeman wanted immediate results. A more intelligent manager would have gradually introduced Klaassen, then after a couple months played him in 5 or 6 games on the bounce. If he struggled, pull him out and repeat the formula.
42 Posted 01/06/2020 at 11:47:30
Some people on another thread are saying Everton have gone backwards because they have gone from 16th to 21st on the world's richest clubs list, but I would say Koeman and Walsh took us back at least 10 years with what appeared to be very little consideration towards their plans in creating a balanced squad.
43 Posted 01/06/2020 at 11:58:29
44 Posted 01/06/2020 at 12:15:33
Top of my head, I'd say John Robertson, Kevin Sheedy, and David Beckham. And also off the top of my head, that Koeman definitely came to Everton without a plan.
If it's true that Kenwright wouldn't let him bring Sammy Lee, then he shouldn't have taken the job because he never put his heart and soul into it. He might be the only man to manage Everton who has never displayed an ounce of feelings towards the club or its great supporters.
45 Posted 01/06/2020 at 12:33:43
46 Posted 01/06/2020 at 14:52:18
You're not out of step at all. "Going through the motions" has become shorthand for empty stadiums. I've been watching all the games since Germany allowed their playing. The first games did seem a little slow. And I suppose none of us will ever take to empty stadiums. But the players have been hard at it since that first weekend, just like always.
And if Dortmund and Paderborn were "going through the motions" yesterday, they must have grown wings because both sides were flying. Although why the Paderborn manager allowed his boys to get into a sprinting match with Dortmund is a mystery, given in it resulting in their defense being torn open.
47 Posted 01/06/2020 at 22:40:11
Sheedy; now you've got me all nostalgic. Another Everton great that probably will never get the wider recognition he deserves because he played for unfashionable Everton. I remember my best friend and many others used to lament him for being "lazy" and comment on the amount of blades of grass he covered (or lack of). He didn't need to as his football brain and use of the ball was far superior to those around him. Don't get me wrong, you'd have never stuck him in the middle of the park as our Kevin didn't really like to mix it in the tackle, but you could put up with his lack of pace out on the left; especially with Psycho-Pat behind him. I think that was a good counter-balance!!
48 Posted 02/06/2020 at 09:36:42
I spoke to a Leicester player who played against him during this period, and although I was talking about Peter Reid, because he was my favourite ever Everton player, this fella told me that he found it alright playing against Reidy, but he couldn't get close enough to Sheedy to even kick him.
I watch Iwobi now and maybe it's a confidence issue, but when he's out wide he runs for the sake of it imo. He never looks like he's enjoying it, and that's why he's got to become braver in possession, (something Sheedy excelled at) if he's to take his chance when he gets a go in central midfield, because he's done nothing to convince me he's anything more than a stop-gap, when he's played down the sides.
49 Posted 02/06/2020 at 12:21:59
"Getting into them" is no use if both player and ball are gone by the time you get there. You don't necessarily need pace for that, just speed of mind and quality on the ball.
50 Posted 02/06/2020 at 12:41:57
Good players make time; great players already know how much time they've got, so to play on the wing with such limited pace, then you really need to be a very, very good footballer, something that Kevin Sheedy, undoubtedly was.
51 Posted 02/06/2020 at 19:34:21
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