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Planning pays off for Schalke and Keller

Jens Keller said FC Schalke 04 "played exactly the way we planned" in ousting FC Basel 1893, leaving Murat Yakin looking for an explanation as a promising start went awry.

Planning pays off for Schalke and Keller
Planning pays off for Schalke and Keller ©UEFA.com

Jens Keller, Schalke coach
We played exactly the way we had planned. We closed down the space well, we were compact and positioned ourselves well defensively. Only the start of the game suggested we might be a bit nervous, but we handled this pressure relatively easily and started to create chances of our own before half-time. Once Basel had a player sent off we had full control of the game. We didn't back down from attacking even after we scored the opener. We continued to apply pressure.
 
After the second goal we missed a few chances and could have recorded an even bigger win. But in the end the only thing that matters is that we reached the next round. However, we paid dearly for this win. Benedikt Höwedes and Julian Draxler both picked up injuries and were forced off. Both sustained muscle tears and it's possible they won't return to action in 2013.

Murat Yakin, Basel coach
We began the game well. Our passing was good when we still had 11 players on the pitch. We kept calm and had a lot of possession. Unfortunately we had a player sent off and this caused an imbalance in the team. Schalke then went into a deserved lead, but I still felt we would be able to recover from going a goal down. Then they scored the second and the game was over. We started well and controlled the game – I'm not sure what happened after that.

The red card affected our game and we knew it would be difficult from then on, but we kept a positive attitude. Congratulations to Schalke for reaching the next round. At least we will play [in the UEFA Europa League], but obviously it's a huge disappointment that we failed to reach the next round of the Champions League. That's also the reason I didn't allow myself to be euphoric after we won against Chelsea. I know that in football you have to play all the games before you can celebrate.