Rouven Schröder: Complete focus on our upcoming matches

Mike Büskens took over the role of head coach at FC Schalke 04 on Monday (7/3) until the end of the current season. Rouven Schröder gave an interview about the decision on the following day, during which the sporting director explained how the team as well as the coaching staff are preparing for the upcoming match away to Ingolstadt, what he thought of Dimitrios Grammozis’ farewell statement and what the club’s plans are for the summer.

Rouven Schröder

Rouven Schröder on…

… the decision made for a change of head coach:

The decision to relieve Dimitrios Grammozis of his duties the day following the 4-3 defeat against Hansa Rostock was not an impulse decision, but one which took what has happened previously into account. The discussions were based on facts and not on emotions, and we simply no longer felt that our current setup had a good enough chance of achieving our overarching goal of gaining promotion back to the Bundesliga. The sporting management felt as though the team needed a new impulse going into the end of the season.

… Mike Büsken’s ability to carry out his new role:

We have complete faith in Buyo, because we feel he is the only person who can achieve the turnaround. We’re very happy that he has taken on the role as head coach until the end of the season and that he agrees he is capable of stepping up. Once the season is over, he will then go back to being an assistant coach, in accordance with his own personal wishes. Buyo was already a vital part of the previous coaching set up, but as an assistant, you don’t have that decisive impulse, you’re not giving the team talks, your influence simply isn’t the same as the head coach. You’re more of a spokesperson for the head coach, but now Buyo is in charge and will make the decisions.

… the additional new faces in the coaching setup:

Simon Henzler has taken over from Wil Coort as goalkeeping coach, and we’re also looking out for potential additions to the coaching staff who could join us in the short-term. We’ve got some ideas, but nothing is official yet.

I am a sportsperson, and sportspeople want to win every game.

Rouven Schröder

… Mike Büsken’s current Coronavirus infection:

We hope Buyo can test negative soon and be with us in Ingolstadt. He won’t be with us on the training pitch in the coming days, but he’ll still be able to follow the sessions from isolation and so he won’t miss anything. We’ll film all the sessions with several cameras so that Buyo has a good overall view. He’s also staying in constant contact with his colleagues. If Buyo isn’t able to be there in Ingolstadt, then I’ve got complete faith in the rest of our coaching staff. If the head coach is absent, it shouldn’t be and won’t be an excuse for the team. The lads know we need to win this one – and they really want to win it, too!

… Dimitrios Grammozis’ farewell words on social media:

Dimi showed once again how much of an honourable sportsman and person is with his statement. I was really pleased with how he worded it. As difficult as a separation is, the way in which we sorted things out was respectful on both sides. We wish Dimi all the best for the future and thank him for the work he did at Schalke.

… plans to announce a new head coach for next season:

We’ll announce a new head coach for the 2022/23 season. As a management team, we’ve established an outline for what sort of coach we want, and we’ve already made some initial thoughts. It’s very important to us that the new coach will approach the role here at Schalke with full conviction, regardless of what league we’re playing in, and they need to suit the club. Our initial focus remains on the remaining nine fixtures of the season, as there are still 27 points up for grabs. I’m a sportsperson – and sportspeople want to win every game. That’s our attitude going into these matches, and we’re going to try to finish the season as well as possible.

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