Ahmed Kutucu: The team always takes priority

There wasn’t much in it on Saturday – but for a Paderborn corner in the 81st minute, Ahmed Kutucu would have been the Schalke match winner. After the 1-1 draw, the goalscorer was more disappointed with the result than he was pleased with his individual achievement.

“It’s a real shame that we weren’t able to win the game,” said Kutucu, who came on from the bench to put his team ahead with a 63rd minute goal. The Schalke forward took a pass through the penalty area from Bastian Oczipka in his stride, walked the ball a few yards to the right before finishing into the far corner. “I do that every so often, just lay the ball off to my right and then shoot. Fortunately it worked out for me this time,” said Kutucu, describing his third goal of the season, unable to get fully excited about it, however, given his disappointment about the result: “The team always takes priority.” In other words: Kutucu would have gladly traded his goal in for three points.

Full throttle in every game

Ahmed made clear that he always intends to give 100 percent on the pitch, whether in the starting XI or coming on as a substitute, the advantage of the latter being that he has fresh legs up against more tired opponents: “This gives me more power,” says Kutucu, who described it as especially disappointing to concede the equaliser from a set-piece.

The 19-year-old reiterated that he and his teammates threw everything at the opposition, but the midweek DFB-Pokal tie, which Schalke on 3-2 in extra time, left the players lacking some energy. “Furthermore, there are a number of important players out injured t the moment,” added Kutucu, explaining nevertheless, that three points were on the agenda for Saturday. “Of course we have to set out to win against the team at the bottom of the table,” said Kutucu, “but we know Paderborn are a side that cover a lot of ground and are strong in their tackles. They could be much higher in the table than they are.”

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