Schalke coach Manuel Baum hopes to get a result in the prestigious derby at arch-rivals Borussia Dortmund on Saturday despite their run of 20 games without victory in the Bundesliga.
“We have something to offer as well. We are definitely going there to bring something home,” Baum told a news conference on Friday.
Schalke have not won a league match since January, lost 4-0 in Dortmund last time around and have earned just one point this season which they started with an 8-0 meltdown at champions Bayern Munich under then coach David Wagner.
They earned their lone point of the campaign to date last weekend in a 1-1 draw with Union Berlin.
Baum expressed hope that one of his assistants can help get the players ready for the derby: former defender Naldo who scored the equalizer in their memorable comeback from four goals down to 4-4 in 2017.
“We need both a tactical and mental plan for the derby and Naldo can definitely help with that with his experience,” Baum said.
Schalke will be without attacking players Mark Uth and Suat Serdar as well as goalkeeper Ralf Faehrmann but, looking at Uth, Baum is undeterred.
“Our plan doesn’t depend on who is available. We have a lot of potential in the squad and quality up front. I’m confident that we can compensate for Mark’s absence,” he insisted.
First-team coordinator Sascha Riether also expressed hope that they can end the months-long rot on Saturday in front of a small 300 crowd, instead of 81,000, owing to coronavirus restrictions.
“We know that derbies are very special games. Anything can happen. Regardless of what happened before or what didn’t happen. It is sometimes like a cup match,” Riether told broadcasters RTL/ntv.