Jochen Schneider: We have to balance the books
At Wednesday's press conference, Jochen Schneider provided an update on the goings-on at Schalke. We collected all the important quotes.
Jochen Schneider on…
This season was, in many respects, an unusual one. The final game is always the impression that lasts and our final game was really poor. For long stretches of the season, we played really well – we only had four losses in 25 games. After that it all went downhill and there were various reasons for that. It’s not completely down to this, but of course we had a lot of injuries in the final stages of the season. We really had trouble in defence after that, and we struggled going forward with the loss of two dangerous attacking midfielders. There were simply too many injuries for our squad to cope and we lost our balance. It was like we were a completely different team finishing the season than the one that start started it.
…his trust in David Wagner:
Lots of clubs just axe their coach straight away when things are going bad, but we’re not like that. I have complete faith in David Wagner and I’m convinced that he can get us out of this situation. If that happens, then we already have a great structure from which to build for the future. When David Wagner had the entire squad at his disposal, we played a lot of attractive football, and we were successful.
…Clemens Tönnies departure:
Everyone knows what a difficult decision it was for Clemens Tönnies. We’d like to thank him for all the great work he’s done over the last 26 years. He’s been a massive part of this club for such a long time and has overseen huge decision like the VELTINS-ARENA move, the Knappenschmiede becoming professional, and not to mention the expansion of the club premises.
Stability and economic reason have to take precedent over ambitious targets.
We have to try and balance the books. That’s not happened in the past few years – mostly because we’ve missed out on European competitions in recent years and have therefore missed out on the money that comes with it. From 2005 to 2016, FC Schalke 04 was in Europe for ten of those eleven years, but in the last four, we’ve done it just once. It’s our responsibility now to look after the costs. I don’t want to get into the specific numbers, but it’s common sense that the budget has to take a hit in order to save money. We know, however, that we still have a responsibility to do right by and try to improve our team year on year, and so we’re trying to work that out. You have to consider as well that the Coronavirus pandemic is not yet over and we haven’t beaten the illness yet. Stability and economic reason have to take precedent over ambitious targets.
…a further foregoing of wages by players:
After the outbreak of COVID-19, we had healthy discussions with the team. The players were willing to forego some of their salary until the end of the season and we started putting this into action from March. It’s clear though that these measures won’t be enough and we’ll have to take further action. We have a great squad here and some fantastic characters, though, so I’m convinced that we’ll find a fair solution between us all.
As always, I won’t be dealing with any transfer speculation. I won’t be discussing what positions we need to bring in either, because we’re talking about players who are still under contract at other clubs. When there’s something to talk about, we’ll let you know, but for now, there are are still plenty of leagues who are yet to finish their season, don’t forget that.
We'll continue to invest in our youth academy.
First of all we look at the players who still have a contract with us and those who are returning to the club from loans. Then we look at players who we’ve loaned in, one of whom is Jonjoe Kenny. We would’ve liked to have loaned him in for another year because we really liked what we saw from him out on the pitch. He more than passed the eye test, he’s a great character and even even better player. We expressed our interest to Everton but they had other plans for him, and we have to respect that.
…Benjamin Stambouli’s future:
His contract at Schalke will run out soon, but we’d love to keep him and we’re working towards that end.
We’ll continue to invest in our youth academy. Can Bozgodan has shown in recent weeks that he’s player who’s ready for the Bundesliga. We also have a lot of other players alongside him who we feel have the potential to make the step up. It’s also our responsibility to keep on finding more talent for our Knappenschmiede and we’ll be working with Norbert Elgert and his team to make that happen.