Schalke in the Europa League on course for the round of 16


Schalke players celebrate a goal against PAOK. Photo: Ina Fassbender

(Photo: dpa)

Guido Burgstaller Guido Burgstaller (27th minute), Max Meyer (82nd) ​​and substitute Klaas-Jan Huntelaar (90th) scored the important away goal in the first leg in front of 28,000 spectators for a safe 3-0 (1-0) victory in the Greek club PAOK Thessaloniki.

After the fourth competitive game without defeat in a row, the 11th in the Bundesliga has almost certainly made it into the round of the top 16 before the second leg. “It was very, very important that we won here and that too without a clean sheet,” said goalscorer Burgstaller. Meyer judged: “PAOK put a lot of pressure on at the beginning, you have to withstand that first, we did well. We then made it 1-0 at the right time.”

loss of possession

Guido Burgstaller loses the fight for the ball against PAOK players Stelios Malezas and Evgen Shakhov. Photo: Ina Fassbender

(Photo: dpa)

The Schalke eleven, who made two changes after the 2-0 win against Hertha BSC, got off to a shaky start and made a few stick errors at the beginning. The hosts were more alert with the momentum of nine games without defeat in the league and cup and had the first major chance through full-back Léo Matos, who only hit the outside post (5th). Two minutes later, keeper Ralf Fährmann parried a direct free kick from the edge of the penalty area.


Guido Burgstaller made it 1-0 against Thessaloniki’s goalkeeper Panagiotis Glykos (M). Photo: Ina Fassbender

(Photo: dpa)

After about a quarter of an hour, the Royal Blues got into the game better. Even without the in-form Algerian Nabil Bentaleb, who was absent due to a gastrointestinal infection, the guests showed their physical presence and did not shy away from a duel. However, the first approaches to the Greek goal were not really dangerous. Leon Goretzka had the best opportunity with a long-range shot (17th).

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Schalke’s Sead Kolasinac holds his own on the ball against Giannis Mystakidis (l) from PAOK Thessaloniki. Photo: Ina Fassbender

(Photo: dpa)

Winter new signing Burgstaller then gave the Revierclub the lead with the guests’ first big chance to score. After a free kick from Alessandro Schöpf, PAOK keeper Panagiotis Glykos was able to parry a header from Naldo, and Burgstaller scored the rebound from close range. It was the Austrian’s third competitive goal for Schalke. The guests then had the game under control against the shocked Greeks and hardly allowed anything to happen.


Max Meyer runs across the pitch after his goal to make it 2-0. Photo: Ina Fassbender

(Photo: dpa)

Saloniki defender Marin Leovac saw a yellow card after a foul on Schöpf (34th) and will miss the Greeks in the second leg, and Matos and Fernando Varela will also be suspended. After the break, the Royal Blues continued to control events.

The game became more and more flat as the game went on, the third-placed team in the Greek league acted too unimaginatively to really endanger Schalke’s defence. Shortly before the end, attacking player Max Meyer scored with a header after a Benedikt Höwedes cross. Huntelaar, who was injured for a long time, even scored his 50th European goal in 81 games, putting Schalke in a comfortable position for the second leg.

Even before the game, there had been clashes between Schalke fans and the police in the northern Greek port city. Hooligans rioted on the harbor promenade and damaged a café, but according to the police nobody was injured.

Preliminary report on the Schalke website

Club announcement and squad


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