Schalke’s free fall continues under new coach Thomas Reis. The 0:2 against Freiburg is the seventh bankruptcy in a row.
Thomas Reis high-fived his disappointed players in the gray Malocher pullover, then Schalke 04’s long-time losers ran hesitantly in the direction of the North Stand. “Let’s go, Schalke, fight and win”, the fans sang encouragingly after the 0: 2 (0: 1) against SC Freiburg. The rest of the arena was already half empty, the seventh consecutive bankruptcy and the last place in the table had left their mark.
This also applied to coach Reis, who wore a hoodie with the imprint “Kumpel- und Malocherklub Schalke 04” on his debut. “There must be more for sure. We won’t stick our heads in the sand, but it will definitely be very difficult,” said the hopeful at DAZN. It’s true: Even with the ex-Bochumer, there is the greatest need for relegation around the arena.
Curious: Reis lost two games in a row in the Veltins Arena – seven weeks ago his last with VfL Bochum, now his debut with Gelsenkirchen. Vincenzo Grifo scored twice (45th + 1st and 61st, penalty after video evidence) for Freiburg, who claimed third place in the table with 24 points – they have never been in such a good position in their Bundesliga history after twelve match days.
Schalke attacker Sebastian Polter also found positive points. “The coach brought in good input. We now have to listen to what the coaching team wants from us. Everyone has to take responsibility,” said the striker: “The season is still a long time to collect points. You just have to at some point we start.”
Schalke – Freiburg: Grifo shines with a brace
That didn’t work against Freiburg. 50 days after a 1:3 in the tram derby, after which he had been given leave from Bochum, Reis switched to his preferred 4-3-3 system at his new employer and relied on Polter in the center of the attack instead of the second division record scorer Simon Terodde. The attacker scored ten Bundesliga goals in Bochum last season but has only scored once against his former club since the transfer to Schalke.
Schalke were unlucky on the pitch: Just as the hosts had shed their uncertainty and made the game more balanced, the Freiburg lead fell and Grifo flicked the ball into the far corner. “They gave me space. And when I have the space, I try to use it,” said Grifo after the game.
After the break, the guests pushed for the 2:0. Schalke were initially lucky that the ball did not land in the goal. Then Reis brought on Terodde for Polter – but the goal fell for Freiburg. After a foul by Calhanoglu on Woo-Yeong Jeong, referee Christian Dingert initially allowed the game to continue, but he also awarded a penalty after Cologne cellars intervened.
Schalke 04 – SC Freiburg: The voices
Thomas Reis (Schalke 04 coach): “We were able to force Freiburg to play a lot of long balls, defended really well, but didn’t play our transition moments properly. Then you conceded a goal at half-time because you weren’t defending carelessly. Freiburg kept us busy in the second half, the crucial point was the penalty, that was almost the end of the game. But I saw a team that at least put everything into it.”
Christian Streich (Coach SC Freiburg): “We talked about mentality and attitude before the game. The team showed that mentality and attitude from the first minute, overall it was a good performance and a deserved win.”