On Sunday evening, Thomas Reis will start the big adventure called Schalke with his first competitive game. There are definitely more pleasant tasks than leading the club, which is currently in serious trouble - in terms of personnel and finances - into a duel with the in-form SC Freiburg a few days after taking office. And that's phrased very nicely.
In short: Royal blue supporters shouldn't get their hopes up too high. Even though it's a home game where the team can count on full fan support again, Freiburg are in a very good mood at the moment. Both in the Bundesliga as third in the table and in the Europa League.
"It's not an easy situation," Reis admitted at his presentation on Thursday (via WAZ). He also seems to want to focus on the psychology of the team: "The players always read that it is said that the team is not suitable for the Bundesliga – but it is up to everyone to prove themselves. We may be bottom of the league, but we have it ourselves in hand that it will get better."
"We have to try to get into their heads, we have to develop greed, we have to fight more intensively. We want to get it into the players' heads that winning the ball is also a partial success," he continued.
Rodrigo Zalazar is also missing - in the truest sense of the word. The 23-year-old is working on his comeback, which is unlikely to happen until the first month or two of next year.
TW: Alexander Schwolow - the blunder against Hertha sparked a goalkeeper debate. Reis said: "I'll get my opinion on the training sessions and then see which player is best suited to be successful on Sunday." This gave Schwolow a new chance. IV: Maya Yoshida - due to a lack of alternatives, he too remains in the starting XI. Especially if Reis wants to hold on to the three-man chain for the time being.IV: Timothée Kolodziejczak - it wouldn't come as a surprise if 'Kolo' were allowed to celebrate his starting XI debut against Sport-Club.IV: Cedric Brunner - in a somewhat unfamiliar role, held centrally on the right side, the actual right-back would be a much better option than Henning Matriciani.LAV: Tobias Mohr - because Thomas Ouwejan had a slump recently, Mohr could move back into the starting XI. He could be an important influence on the left wing.RAV: Mehmet Aydin - if Brunner plays in central defence, there would be room for the youngster on the right. He can perform this role better than Matriciani.ZM: Tom Krauß - he was always seeded under Frank Kramer, but that shouldn't change under Reis. The loan player was simply too good for that and too important, especially when working against the ball.ZM: Alex Kral - while Danny Latza and Florian Flick are the currently inferior alternatives, the Czech should remain in the starting eleven. Recently he was able to convince with comparatively good performances.ZOM: Florent Mollet - Drexler would also be an option, but the Frenchman has been able to work his way closer to a regular place in the last few games. Another chance with the double attack in front of him would be worth a try. ST: Marius Bülter - he is one of the most active Schalke players and certainly no worse than other offensive colleagues. Bülter is therefore likely to play a bigger role under Reis as well.ST: Simon Terodde - while Sebastian Polter played an important role in Bochum last year, where he was Reis' striker, Terodde is likely to have the advantage in the starting XI.
Recently it became clear that Schalke would do well with a three-man chain for the time being. The current failures are suboptimal in this regard, but with a few changes you can maintain this basic order.
This article was originally published on 90min.com/de as Schalke 04: The likely line-up against SC Freiburg.