Can Bozdogan: I have always been working towards this day
A new-look Schalke side: Can Bozdogan made his Bundesliga debut in the 1-1 draw against Bayer Leverkusen on Sunday. The German national youth team player was named in the starting XI for his debut, completing 69 minutes.
“It hasn’t really sunk in yet,” said Bozdogan, who normally plays for the U19 side. The midfielder has made 13 appearances in the U19 Bundesliga West so far this season, scoring three goals and providing three assists.
David Wagner has kept a keen eye on the youngster for a while now. Bozdogan has already trained with the first team on a number of occasions, including joining the team on their winter training camp in Fuente Alamo back in January this year. The youth team player made a good impression during his short spell there, before having to leave prematurely due to suffering a ligament injury.
Can did anything but hide away, he was very active, very lively and showed that he enjoys playing football.
The 19-year-old is now fully fit again and was able to build on his good first impression with an impressive performance in his first ever appearance in Germany’s top flight. “Can played really well while he was on the pitch,” David Wagner praised the debutant. He did anything but hide away, he was very active, very lively and showed that he enjoys playing football.” Bozdogan himself described it a childhood dream come true. “I have always been working towards this day,” said the midfielder.
A surprise on the morning of the game
Bozdogan only found out that he would be starting just a few hours before kick-off. “On the morning before the game we had another quick session. There were rumours that I could be starting,” said the youngster. “Then David Wagner told me afterwards. I was really happy. Of course I was also nervous, especially in the few minutes right before kick-off.”
However, the nerves quickly went away. Bozdogan showed some nice touches, he wanted the ball and it took him less than two minutes to be involved in creating the first chance of the game. The 19-year-old wasn’t too disappointed with the result against the team sitting fourth in the table, despite the fact that, “we definitely could have won all three points. But, in the end, I think it’s a fair result. Leverkusen had lots of possession and created some good chances of their own,” said Bozdogan.