Christian Heidel: What a finale!
When the highlights of the season were shown in the VELTINS-Arena after the final whistle on Saturday (12/05), Christian Heidel’s eyes turned to the big screen, laughing with joy. The sporting director spoke afterwards about the successful end to the season against Eintracht Frankfurt, the reasons for the team’s upsurge in form, finishing the season as runners-up and his expectations of juggling three competitions in 2018/19.
… ending the season in style:
I think we fully deserved the win. We had numerous chances and could have won by a higher margin. In my eyes, it was an outstanding performance given that we knew beforehand we would finish 2nd. To then turn up with that commitment and concentration made it a real finale! That reflects the entire season and says something about the attitude of this excellent team.
… why the season was so successful:
We had a very clear plan. Our coach formed an idea with the team and personnel available to him. If you look at the final table, you can see that Domenico Tedesco has done everything right. For that reason, I think he deserves huge credit. But the same goes for the squad. I believe that this team has often been criticised unfairly in the past. At times, people made it sound like nobody could play football at Schalke. But the boys completely deserve to be 2nd in the table. However, we also all know that there is still room for improvement. We have taken a huge step in our development but we are still a long way from our end objective.
… the table:
To finish eight points above 3rd place is a huge achievement. Having said that, we all know that we need to view that in perspective. Nonetheless, we are obviously extremely proud of our efforts this season.
… finishing as runners-up:
Bayern Munich are well-deserved champions. They have the best team and the most lucrative opportunities. All teams that lie behind them need to try to do things as well as they do so that it can be closer in the future.
… juggling three competitions next season:
We are all looking forward to the Champions League since it is something we have been working very hard towards. Therefore, we will not be complaining about the extra work load or blaming mid-week games as an excuse if we lose a Bundesliga match. Our task now is to build a squad that can cope with that. This not something that I am fearful of. But we will not announce the names of any new signings until the deal is done. We have secured two very good transfers so far in Mark Uth and Salif Sane.