2-2 against Genk – Uth and Schöpf score against the Belgian leaders
FC Schalke 04 put in a strong performance on Friday (11/1) in the friendly against KFC Genk, a match concluding the training camp in Benidorm. Although S04 couldn’t get the win against the table-topping Belgian side, they were the better team in the 2-2 draw. The Royal Blue goals were scored by Mark Uth (19’) and Alessandro Schöpf (57’).
The first chance of the match came just seconds in, as Daniel Caligiuri tested Genk keeper Nordin Jackers from 20 yards out. After this, there were few chances for ten minutes or so, despite some notable pressure being applied by Schalke. Mark Uth, who made his return after two months injured, had the next chance, but again Jackers were on hand to keep the scores level.
Uth scores on his return
The Belgian leaders took the lead almost out of nowhere after 17 mintues. Sebastien Dawaest was on hand to convert a Malinovskyi corner from close range to give his side a 1-0 lead. Schalke responded almost instantaneously, as Germany international Mark Uth stabbed the ball over the line from a Daniel Caligiuri cross less than 120 seconds after conceding. Yevhen Konoplyanka could have scored Schalke’s second goal, but Janckers made a fine save as he tipped the Ukrainian’s shot onto the post and out.
The third goal of the afternoon was scored by Genk: Leandro Trossard cut inside from the left and curled a ball into the top corner after half an hour, leaving Ralf Fährmann no chance whatsoever. No further goals came before the break, meaning the Europa League competitors lead 2-1 at the break.
Domenico Tedesco made two changes at the start of the second half, bringing on Alexander Nübel and Weston McKennie. Six more players came during the half – Omar Mascarell, Ahmed Kutucu, Haji Wright, Philip Fontein and Sascha Riether got their respective chances. Genk head coach, Philippe Clement, made ten all ten changes in the 62nd minute.
Schalke continued to put in a lot effort after the break and got their reward in the 57th minute, when Alessandro Schöpf volley home a Konoplyanka cross to level proceedings. The regular substitutions killed the flow of the game somewhat, meaning that the next opportunities came late on in the game. Genk’s Dieumerci Ndongala just missed the target from the edge of the box (87’), whereas Ahmed Kutucu found the target, but was well denied by Genk’s keeper at the death.
Bundesliga begin against Wolfsburg
The friendly against Genk marks the end of the training camp in Benidorm. On Saturday (12/1), the squad will travel back to Germany to start preparing for the first game of the second half of the season against VfL Wolfsburg (20/01, 18:00 CET) at the VELTINS-Arena.
Schalke: Fährmann (46′ Nübel), Caligiuri (84′ Goller), Sané (89′ Riether), Nastasic, Oczipka, Schöpf (80′ Fontein), Stambouli, Rudy (67′ Mascarell), Konoplyanka (62′ Kutucu), Skrzybski (67′ Wright), Uth (46′ McKennie)
Genk: Jackers, Aidoo (62′ Weigers), Dewaest (62′ Wouters), Uronen (62′ Lucumi), Trossard (62′ Borges), Malinovskyi (62′ Heynen), Berge (62′ Pietrowski), De Norre (62′ Zhegrova), Pozuelo (62′ Ndongala), Samatta (62′ Paintsil), Gano (62′ Ingvartsen)
Goals: 0-1 Dewaest (17′), 1-1 Uth (19′), 1-2 Trossard (30.’), 2-2 Schöpf (57′)
Referee: Hernandez (Spain)