Manuel Baum pleased to see Suat Serdar return

The international break has come to a close and FC Schalke 04 now face their final block of Bundesliga fixtures before the end of the year. Suat Serdar returns as an option for Saturday’s home game against VfL Wolfsburg (21/11, 15:30 CET) after being missed, out with injury, in recent weeks. “Suat is an extraordinary player – you see that every day in training,” says head coach Manuel Baum.

Suat Serdar und Manuel Baum

The Germany international, who has been out with a thigh injury, has been able to train pain-free. “If all goes to plan, Suat will definitely be in the squad against Wolfsburg. Whether he makes it into the starting eleven, we’ll have to see,” says the head coach, who has been impressed by the midfielder in training. “Suat is a player who gets from one end of the pitch to the other so quickly. Sometimes you wonder if his twin has popped up in the other penalty area. He’s a really important player for us with and without the ball.”

Eight Royal Blues were on international duty

The boys used the two-week break well, fine-tuning their skills on the training ground. One key part of that was defending counter-attacks, which wasn’t always done well in what was an otherwise convincing performance in the 2-2 draw in Mainz. “We’ve also worked hard on our fitness,” says Baum, who seized the opportunity now with the lack of a winter break.

Suat is an extraordinary player – you see that every day in training.

Manuel Baum

The head coach didn’t have all his players available, however, with eight Royal Blues away on international duty. The last players will return very soon and their condition will be examined as routine.

Coach seeking conversation with the goalkeepers

Baum is looking to discuss with Ralf Fährmann and Frederik Rönnow who will be between the sticks for the VfL Wolfsburg game. He’ll talk to them in one of the next few training sessions. “I’ve already made a decision, but I’ll let the players know before I make it public,” he says.

Baum expects the opposition to be in high spirits; they’re yet to lose a game this season. “Wolfsburg will come here with confidence,” says the 41-year-old. He describes the side as one that makes lots of sprints and covers a lot of ground, as well as being flexible. “It will be tough, but I’m confident that we’re going into it with the right attitude.” He thinks it will be important to give it everything physically, but Baum also stresses that “we want to play our football too.”

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