Manuel Baum: Creating a positive atmosphere through victories

More than seven weeks after the originally scheduled date, FC Schalke 04 will kick off their 2020/21 DFB-Pokal campaign on Tuesday (03.11). Facing the Royal Blues is 1. FC Schweinfurt 05, a team that Manuel Baum knows all about thanks to growing up in nearby Landshut.

Manuel Baum

More than seven weeks after the originally scheduled date, FC Schalke 04 will kick off their 2020/21 DFB-Pokal campaign on Tuesday (03.11). Facing the Royal Blues is 1. FC Schweinfurt 05, a team that Manuel Baum knows all about thanks to growing up in nearby Landshut.

“I know Schweinfurt well as they’re also from Bavaria. I also know what an ambitious club they are and that they will be aiming to gain promotion into the 3rd tier as soon as possible,” said the Schalke head coach of the upcoming opponents at the pre-match press conference on Monday (02.11). “It will be challenge, but we want to meet it head on and win.”

Baum was keen to emphasise that he and the Schalke backroom staff are preparing for the match against the Regionalliga side as meticulously as they do for a Bundesliga game. “That’s the most important message we can send to the team,” explained the coach, who in return expressed his desire to see “100% commitment and passion from the team, just like in a Bundesliga game.”

Only Serdar and Kabak to miss the game

Baum is only missing two of his first team players for the match – Suat Serdar (due to injury) and Ozan Kabak (due to suspension). Schweinfurt had originally applied to move the game to Bavaria due to the ongoing pandemic and its consequences, but the match will take place in the VELTINS-Arena with kick off at 16:30 CET. The coach did not reveal to what extent he intends to rotate the first-team squad against the Bavarian regional league team. “We have a few players who have been injured for a long time and are not back into the swing of things yet. It’s important that we properly consider whether we keep the same side or give others an opportunity to prove themselves,” said Baum. “What’s important is that we field a good team who can go out there and win on Tuesday against Schweinfurt.”

With a win against the Schnüdel, the Royal Blues will be hoping to gain the self-confidence that will be a major boost for the rest of the season. “Every victory is so important, as it contributes so much to creating a positive atmosphere around the team and the club. Our goal is to come out of the game tomorrow with a positive feeling like this,” concluded Baum.

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