1-1 draw against Aue

FC Schalke 04 missed out on a third successive win in all competitions on Friday evening (13/8). Dimitrios Grammozis’ side drew 1-1 at the VELTINS-Arena – which opened on this day exactly 20 years ago – against FC Erzgebirge Aue in front of 20,126 fans. Dominick Drexler put Schalke ahead (32’), before Sascha Härtel grabbed a late equaliser for the away team.

Thiaw back, first start for Mikhailov

There were two changes to the side that won 4-1 at FC 08 Villingen in the DFB-Pokal last weekend. Malick Thiaw, who missed out that day due to a thigh problem, replaced Dries Wouters in the centre of defence. The other new face in the side was Yaroslav Mikhailov. He came in for Florian Flick to make his first start for the club. Dimitrios Grammozis switched things up tactically, going with a 4-4-2 formation to face Aue.

Drexler’s first S04 goal puts Schalke ahead at the break

Schalke looked to get into the opposition box right from the beginning, with Marius Bülter (5’) and Simon Terodde (8’) both having headers early on, albeit without troubling the Aue goalkeeper. In between those moments, Bülter also had a shot blocked by defender Dirk Carlson (6’).

The first clear-cut chance of the game belonged to Schalke. Simon Terodde played it nicely through to Marius Bülter, and he squared it to Yaroslav Mikhailov. The Russian, however, just cleared the bar with his shot, despite having most of the goal free to aim at (21’). Less than a minute later, Dominick Drexler headed a Zalazar free-kick wide, while captain Victor Pálsson also did the same from an Ouwejan corner (25’).

With 32 minutes played, the Royal Blues went ahead. Dominick Drexler struck the ball past Martin Männel having been slotted in by Simon Terodde, who himself received the ball from a lovely Marius Bülter chip. Drexler’s first goal for the club was the only one in the first half.

The away side failed to cause Schalke any defensive worries in the first period. Their only shot came in added time, as Dimitrij Nazarov fired a half-volley from distance straight at Ralf Fährmann (45’).

Aue equalise late on

Schalke continued pressing for goals at the start of the second half. Männel parried a powerful strike from Thomas Ouwejan for a corner (49’). The resulting set piece saw the next chance. Simon Terodde met it with his head at the back post, however by the time he got there the angle was too awkward and he couldn’t find the target. After 54 minutes, Marius Bülter tried to lob Männel from range, but his effort went well wide (54’).

Almost out of nowhere, the ‘Violets’ came close to levelling. Ben Zolinski at the back post chested it down to Babacar Gueye, who couldn’t connect properly with the ball from just a few yards out (57’). The second half was a lot more even in compared to the first, and the ball spent more time in the middle of the park. Aue continued to try and score and were then kept at bay by a brilliant Ralf Fährmann save. He expertly tipped Omar Sarif Sijaric’s strike wide (77‘).

At the other end, Schalke were alive again. After Blendi Idrizi’s shot was blocked, Thomas Ouwejan stabbed the rebound towards goal. His shot didn’t have enough on it to trouble Männel, though (82’). Instead of a second Schalke goal, the visitors scored themselves. Substitute Sascha Härtel had a simple job of tapping into an empty net after getting on the end of a low cross to the far post (86’). In a hectic final few minutes, the closest either side came to a winner was Thomas Ouwejan’s curling free-kick in the last second of added time, which just bent past the post.

Away game in Regensburg

Schalke’s matchday 4 fixture will see them make a long trip down south to face Regensburg. That game will take place on Saturday (21/8) at 13:30 CEST. Exactly one week later, the Knappen will host Fortuna Düsseldorf at 20:30 CEST in the VELTINS-Arena.

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