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UEFA Champions League
12 December 2013
• Veltins-Arena, Gelsenkirchen
Referee: P. Tagliavento
• Attendance: 52093
J. Draxler 51'
J. Matip 57'
That's your lot from the Veltins-Arena in Gelsenkirchen. Thanks to all of you who joined me, Harry Slavin. I'll see you all in the New Year for more Champions League action, but until then, bye for now!
FULL-TIME: SCHALKE 2-0 BASEL. Job done for the hosts as they make the most of the extra man in the second half to seal their place in the final 16. Farfan was a constant threat and if it wasn't for Sommer in the Basel goal, things could have been a lot worse for the Swiss outfit.
90' + 2'
Deep into stoppage time now as Szalai forces Sommer into another great stop!
POST!!! Farfan just cannot get the better of Sommer. This time the keeper tips his effort onto the woodwork as Schalke continue to search for the goal that would add the gloss to their qualification.
A great double save from Sommer prevents Farfan again! Szalai is played clean through by Boateng but the Basel keeper is quick off his line to deny the striker and is up again to stop the Peruvian from rounding him.
Great defending from Voser as he gets across to beat Neustadter to the ball from Fuchs' cross.
Yellow Card Giovanni-Guy Yann Sio
Another booking, this time for Sio, the Basel sub as he brings down Uchida. Just five minutes left in this one now.
Kevin-Prince Boateng has the chance to get his name on the scoresheet but he puts his effort a whisker wide from outside the area.
What a stop from Sommer! Farfan's performance has deserved a goal this evening but he is denied by a top-drawer save as the Basel keeper tips his free kick behind for a corner.
Yellow Card Sead Kolasinac
Another booking for the hosts as Kolasinac takes one for the team, bringing down Salah as Basel's danger man threatens to break up the park.
Jens Keller's side are unrelenting at the moments and are being awarded corner after corner at the moment. Farfan and Meyer are the latest to deliver the ball into the Basel area, but the visitor's defence looked to have learnt their lesson from set pieces.
A double sub from Basel as Stocker and Die come off. On come Ajeti and Delgado. The latter netted an eqauliser the last time these two met in Gelsenkirchen back in 2004. A repeat would be nothing short of a miracle.
Matias Emilio Delgado
G. Serey Die
The guy has been unplayable tonight. Farfan slams on the accelerators yet again to deliver another inviting cross into the centre, but Szalai just can't quite reach it. Schalke look like they're enjoying this now.
A big chance for Szalai to really rub it in for Basel but his header is well stopped by Sommer after connecting with Farfan's (who else!?) cross.
Not good news at all for Draxler as he leaves the pitch for Fuchs. He's actually still sitting on the far side of the field receiving treatment. Worrying scenes for Jens Keller.
It's currently 10 v 10 on the pitch as Draxler rolls off the pitch to receive treatment. It doesn't look too clever for the winger either as he goes down clutching his hamstring.
Yellow Card Joel Matip
Matip is into the book now to add to his goal as he bundles over Streller. There was very little in it as the midfielder went into the back of the Basel captain. A soft yellow card.
Mohamed El Nenny
Giovanni-Guy Yann Sio
Basel are clearly incensed by the decision. Looking at replays, it does seem that, despite Serey Die's slow reactions, most, if not all Schalke players were offside. Schar takes his anger out on Szalai on the right-hand side and is cautioned for a tough challenge.
Yellow Card Fabian Schaer
Yellow Card Fabian Frei
Assist Jefferson Agustin Farfán
Goal Joel Matip
GOOAALLL!!! MATIP FOR SCHALKE!!! A crazy moment in the Veltins-Arena as Basel get a training ground move totally wrong! They try to step up as a unit but Serey Die is late to the party and keeps every Schalke player onside from Farfan's free kick. Matip is left with all the time in the world to pick his spot and tuck the ball beyond Sommer. Basel can't believe the referee's flag didn't go up, and judging by his expression, neither can Matip!
An incredible stat from UEFA here. That goal has seen Basel concede away from home in the Champions League for the 16th time in a row.
A long road back for Basel you feel, especially with ten men. Draxler is straight back in the thick of the action and Sommer has to be alert to get down and stop his cross reaching anyone in a blue jersey.
Assist Jefferson Agustin Farfán
Goal Julian Draxler
GOAAALLL!!! BREAKTHROUGH FOR SCHALKE!!! Finally the hosts have their goal. Farfan has already delivered a couple of quality crosses from the right and he sends in another cracking ball here. It's whipped to the back post where Draxler has the composure to sidefoot the ball back across goal into the corner.
Draxler scampers forward for the first time in the half. He gets down the left and looks to loft a cross in, but there is far too much on it and it sails over everyone in the area.
Both sides have set up for the second half as you'd probably expect. Basel have every player dropping back into their own half. The hosts meanwhile have pushed quite a few men on.
Away we go. A big 45 minutes coming up for both these sides...
The teams are back out then at the Veltins-Arena and Schalke are ready to get us back underway.
No doubt what will be getting discussed in the stands at the break as fans compare the two fouls, just moments apart. Howedes was only booked for hauling down Streller but Ivanov saw red for pulling back Boateng. Santana may just have been covering across for Schalke but it's a close call.
HALF-TIME: SCHALKE 0-0 BASEL. Still even on the scoresheet at the break but not on the pitch as Schalke have constantly threatened their opponents but with no end product as yet. Max Meyer has been constantly creative in the middle and Jens Keller's men are getting into all the right places. Their definitely in the driving seat, but they still need to find that elusive Champions League goal.
45' + 1'
As you would expect, it is all Schalke at the moment. Draxler tries to pick out a team-mate from the left-wing but his cross misses everyone. We are into one minute of added time.
More excellent work from Meyer and another chance for Farfan! Meyer works his way to the bye-line and his ball across the face of goal isn't cleared, allowing Farfan to force Sommer into a terrific point-blank save.
Some desperate stuff defensively from the visitors now as a group of them swarm around the penalty spot to hack the ball clear from Draxler's corner.
Just five minutes left before the break as Schalke look to take charge of this. They've been granted a golden opportunity to qualify after that red card for Ivanov. There won't be many excuses available having played almost an hour against ten men.
Meyer wins a corner for the hosts after more good work. Draxler swings it in but it is too close to Sommer, who collects the ball under no real pressure.
A nasty challenge from Serey Die on Neustadter goes unpunished by referee Tagliavento. The Basel man can certainly count himself lucky that his studs-up challenge on the German wasn't spotted.
Farfan makes Sommer work with his free kick but the Basel keeper is able to hold comfortably. Meanwhile Howedes has been subbed for Szalai for Schalke, who now only have ten men to beat to seal qualification. Simple, right?
Red Card I. Ivanov
RED CARD!!! I think I'm seeing double here as moments after Schalke are caught out by the long ball, the same happens at the other end. Boateng gets past Ivanov in a foot race for the loose ball but the defender decides to take a leaf out of Howedes' book and bring down the forward. This time it's a red card though for last man Ivanov!
Yellow Card Benedikt Höwedes
Howedes is in trouble, and in more ways than one. Basel clear long downfield from a Farfan corner and it catches the central defender out as Streller gets the wrong side of him and looks to bear down on goal. He has to take out the striker and looks to hurt himself in the process. It's a caution and a likely substitution for the captain.
A first stop for Sommer too now as he keeps out Meyer's tame effort. The youngster has been excellent in these opening stages, popping up everywhere at the moment.
A cross from Draxler on the left looks dangerous as Boateng peels away from his man, but it's just a touch to high for the former Milan man, and Farfan can't recycle the ball as he picks it up on the opposite flank.
The ball sits up nicely for Basel's Stocker during a rare foray into the Schalke half and the winger decides to let fly. It's a decent enough connection, but not one that's going to trouble Fahrmann, as he comfortably gathers to make his first stop of the night.
Yellow Card Kay Voser
First booking of the evening is shown to Kay Voser as the right-back cuts down Meyer from behind.
The fans around the Veltins-Arena can sense their side is in the ascendancy and are getting right behind the boys in blue. The visitors haven't been out of their half for the last 10 minutes!
Schalke aren't knocking on the door. They are banging on it. Farfan weaves a pocket of space inside the Basel area and is inches away from finding the target with his delicately placed effort towards the far corner.
It looks as though it might have been Xhaka that deflected the ball onto his own crossbar there. Ivanov got back on the line to stop Meyer's effort as Basel survive an almighty scare.
How on earth are Schalke not in front!? Farfan powers down the right wing and sends in a delicious low cross that Boateng stabs onto the bar. Draxler is there to pick up the rebound and his cut-back finds Meyer, whose scuffed effort is hacked off the line! Extraordinary!
Kevin-Prince Boateng goes down on the edge of the area under the challenge of Schar. He looks to the referee but there is no decision coming and instead play is waived on.
It continues to be Basel looking to forge the early opening, and they almost have one. Streller is put clean through one-on-one but the chance disappears as the linesman raises his flag to flag the captain offside.
Basel enjoy their first bout of possession now and Streller and Salah try to link up down the right to create an opportunity. Salah eventually sends in a looping cross but support is too late in arriving to make anything of it.
18-year-old Max Meyer gets on the ball early on and embarks on a run from inside his own half. He's quickly dispossessed as he gets into Basel territory, but an early sign of intentions for the home side.
A short toot on his whistle from Italian referee Paolo Tagliavento and we are underway in Gelsenkirchen!
The sides are out at the Veltins-Arena for the fairplay handshakes and the tribute to Nelson Mandela that was started yesterday evening at every Champions League game. Basel, in their all white away kit, are about ot get is up and running.
Schalke have to make do without the suspended Jermaine Jones as Max Meyer comes into the midfield. Murat Yakin welcomes back captain Marco Streller for tonight's crunch tie after being rested for Basel's 1-1 draw with Grasshopper Club at the weekend.
BASEL: (4-5-1) Sommer; Voser, Schar, Ivanov, Xhaka; Salah, Elneny, F.Frei, Serey Die, Stocker; Streller.
SCHALKE: (4-2-3-1) Fahrmann; Uchida, Howedes, Santana, Kolasinac; Matip, Neustadter; Farfan, Meyer, Draxler; Boateng.
We have just under 15 minutes until kick off now. The teams have alreay been announced so let's take a look at how the sides line up. We'll start with the hosts.
Jens Keller's side will certainly require a change of fortune tonight compared to their recent Champions League form. The Konigsblauen have failed to score in each of there last three group game. A similar story tonight will see them playing Europa League football come February.
I'm Harry Slavin and I'll be here to take you through all the action from Stadion Gelsenkirchen, where the hosts need to win to secure a passage into the last 16. If they don't, it'll be visitors Basel mixing it with the big guns in the New Year.
Ding Ding! That's the sound of the bell signalling round two of the final Champions League group matches this week and it's winner takes all in Gelsenkirchen as Schalke host Basel in Group E.
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