Schalker International: Sornchai Loekprempri
In our latest edition of our series ‘Schalker International’, where we’ll meet Schalke fans all over the globe and find out about how they came to love FC Schalke 04, we spoke to Sornchai Loekprempri from Thailand.
How did you become a Schalke fan?
I have supported Schalke since 2006. I watched my first game live on TV. Schalke played an offensive game and the atmosphere in the stadium was excellent. The stadium was beautiful and modern, and the fans were amazing. That’s why I started following this team. That year, we ended up finishing as runners-up, but we should have ended it as champions really.
What’s supporting Schalke like in Thailand? Are we popular there?
Thai people love to watch Premier League games, followed by La Liga, Serie A and then the Bundesliga. Around 90% of the Bundesliga fans support FC Bayern, with the rest cheering for BVB, Schalke, Leverkusen and other teams.
A lot of Thai fans actually support another team in a different league too, but I just support Schalke. The fact that we’re now in the 2. Bundesliga makes it harder for fans to follow the team. That’s why I’ve created a Facebook page for Schalke fans in Thailand. We update the fans about club news in Thai so that more people can get to know our team.
Have you ever seen Schalke play?
Not yet, but hopefully I will in the future. The VELTINS-Arena is my dream destination. I want to go there once in my life and would love to join in with the fans when they sing the songs. A derby game especially must be a truly wonderful experience.
The VELTINS-Arena is my dream destination. I want to go there once in my life and would love to join in with the fans when they sing the songs.
Who is your all-time favourite Schalke player?
Klaas-Jan Huntelaar is my favourite. He’s the most perfect striker we’ve ever had. His instincts in the box were always reliable. Last season he chose to come back and help our team when we were in trouble despite being able to stay with Ajax where he would trophies. It made me believe and I had even more respect for him.
My first favourite player was Kevin Kuranyi and Simon Terodde is my current favourite at the moment.
What’s your favourite memory as a Schalke fan?
The 2010/11 season. Even though our performance in the Bundesliga wasn’t good, we made it to the semi-finals of the Champions League and won the DFB-Pokal. It was still a really impressive season.
Aside from that, my other favourite memories were the 4-4 in the Revierderby, the 5-2 win at Inter and the 4-3 win at the Bernabéu.
And if you had to choose a favourite match?
That would have to be the miracle comeback at Dortmund. When we were 4-0 down at half time, I thought we were very unlikely to turn it around. Our turnaround was amazing!
What makes Schalke special?
The fans make this club special. They always support the team during both wonderful and difficult times. That’s what made me fall in love with Schalke.
Finally, why would you recommend supporting Schalke?
Schalke are a big team in Germany. We want to get back to where we belong, which is taking on big teams in the Bundesliga like Bayern, BVB or Leverkusen. To be successful this season we need the harmonious cooperation of all parties to be successful. And most importantly, we need a lot of support from the fans.
Come on, Schalke!