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Schalke win Group B with Montpellier draw

Published: Tuesday 4 December 2012, 23.00CET
Montpellier Hérault FC 1-1 FC Schalke 04
The eliminated hosts failed to record their first win but the point sufficed for Huub Stevens's visitors to qualify unbeaten in first place from Group B.
by Ian Holyman
from La Mosson

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Match statistics

MontpellierSchalke

Goals scored1
 
1
on target9
 
1
off target9
 
4
Corners5
 
3
Offsides3
 
5
Fouls committed12
 
8
Yellow cards1
 
0
Red Cards0
 
0
Possession (%)52
 
48

Standings

Last updated: 19/06/2013 21:18 CET

Legend:

P: Played   
Pts: Points   
 
Published: Tuesday 4 December 2012, 23.00CET

Schalke win Group B with Montpellier draw

Montpellier Hérault FC 1-1 FC Schalke 04
The eliminated hosts failed to record their first win but the point sufficed for Huub Stevens's visitors to qualify unbeaten in first place from Group B.

FC Schalke 04 secured first place in UEFA Champions League Group B with a draw at Montpellier Hérault SC, who bowed out of the competition on a positive note.

René Girard had insisted his side would make the most of their final European outing this season and the French champions were as good as their coach's word. Though Benedikt Höwedes gave the visitors the lead 11 minutes after the break, Emanuel Herrera levelled three minutes later to earn Montpellier a deserved second point of the group stage. With Arsenal FC losing at Olympiacos FC, a draw was enough for Huub Stevens's men to head into the last 16 as group winners, though only some fine late stops from Timo Hildebrand preserved Schalke's unbeaten record.

While the visiting goalkeeper was playing his first UEFA Champions League game in five years, at the opposite end Jonathan Ligali was making his European competition bow just three days after his Ligue 1 debut. Though he smothered reassuringly at the feet of Julian Draxler, he could only watch Teemu Pukki scuff wide an inviting low Draxler cross shortly after.

Montpellier enjoyed possession without penetration; Schalke pierced whenever they had the ball even with Klaas-Jan Huntelaar on the bench. The hosts found a single chink in the Bundesliga club's armour when Souleymane Camara seized a lofted pass, but the forward's untidy first touch meant a promising shooting opportunity was lost.

The emergence of Romain Pitau from the bench at half-time appeared simply a thoughtful gesture by Girard, handing the midfielder a UEFA Champions League debut at the age of 35. It almost proved a masterstroke with the veteran belying his combative reputation with a delicately weighted ball for Anthony Mounier, whose shot was blocked by Hildebrand before Atsuto Uchida lunged to somehow divert Herrera's follow-up over the unguarded goal.

The full-back's effort prevented a certain goal and, soon after, two fellow defenders combined to create one – Christoph Metzelder headed down Lewis Holtby's flighted free-kick for Höwedes to dive and nod over the line. Montpellier quickly recovered though, and when Herrera's header from a deep Mounier cross was repelled by Metzelder, the Schalke centre-back could not stop the MHSC attacker flicking in the rebound.

His confidence swelled by a maiden UEFA Champions League goal, a rejuvenated Herrera might even have won it for the Ligue 1 team, but the Argentinian was twice denied by Hildebrand – the second time brilliantly so – to leave Montpellier poorly rewarded for their Group B efforts.

Last updated: 06/12/12 1.31CET

http://www.uefa.com/uefachampionsleague/season=2013/matches/round=2000347/match=2009578/postmatch/report/index.html#schalke+group+b

Quotes

  • René Girard

    "This campaign was not the best – we had a lot of glitches. I hope there will be a next time. I am proud of my boys"

Lineups

montpellier

Montpellier

schalke

Schalke

30
LigaliJonathan Ligali (GK)
34
HildebrandTimo Hildebrand (GK)
3
Yanga-MbiwaMapou Yanga-Mbiwa (C)
4
HöwedesBenedikt Höwedes (C)
Goal56
4
HiltonHilton
Yellow Card84
8
MaricaCiprian Marica
Substitution77
5
BedimoHenri Bedimo
10
HoltbyLewis Holtby
8
MounierAnthony Mounier
Substitution67
20
PukkiTeemu Pukki
Substitution84
11
HerreraEmanuel Herrera
Goal59
21
MetzelderChristoph Metzelder
12
CongréDaniel Congré
22
UchidaAtsuto Uchida
13
EstradaMarco Estrada
27
BarnettaTranquillo Barnetta
Substitution72
19
CamaraSouleymane Camara
Substitution67
31
DraxlerJulian Draxler
20
CabellaRémy Cabella
33
NeustädterRoman Neustädter
22
StambouliBenjamin Stambouli
Substitution46
35
KolasinacSead Kolasinac

Substitutes

40
ValetteBaptiste Valette (GK)
36
UnnerstallLars Unnerstall (GK)
7
UtakaJohn Utaka
Substitution67
3
EscuderoSergio Escudero
9
CharbonnierGaëtan Charbonnier
13
JonesJermaine Jones
Substitution72
10
BelhandaYounes Belhanda
Substitution67
19
ObasiChinedu Obasi
Substitution84
14
PitauRomain Pitau
Substitution46
23
FuchsChristian Fuchs
21
El KaoutariAbdel El Kaoutari
25
HuntelaarKlaas-Jan Huntelaar
Substitution77
25
DeplagneMathieu Deplagne
32
MatipJoel Matip

Coach

René Girard (FRA) Huub Stevens (NED)

Referee

Antonio Mateu Lahoz (ESP)

Assistant referees

Pau Cebrian Devis (ESP), Javier Rodriguez (ESP)

Fourth official

Raúl Cabanero Martínez (ESP)

Additional assistant referees

Carlos Gómez (ESP), Carlos Del Cerro (ESP)

Legend:

  • GoalsGoals
  • Own goalOwn goal
  • PenaltiesPenalties
  • Missed PenaltiesMissed Penalties
  • reds_cardRed Cards
  • yellow_cardsYellow cards
  • yellow_red_cardsYellow/red card
  • SubstitutionSubstitution
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