Schalke star Jermaine Jones has said he doesn't see the Bundesliga title as within the club's grasp, calling a German Cup win and Champions League qualification a more "realistic" objective.
The German-born U.S. international midfielder declared himself pleased with Schalke's Bundesliga performance, but stated he saw the club's ambitions more aimed at qualifying for and winning cup competitions.
“I am absolutely satisfied," said Jones. "We are in the leading group of the league and have still great chances in the German Cup and in the Champions League. I was not injured this season and as a regular player I had some confident performances until now.
“Every player lives for titles, but our realistic goal is to qualify again for an international competition. To win the German Cup is another aim and it should be easier than winning the Champions League, where some big squads are competing. We will give everything and then we will see."
The midfielder gave much of the credit Schalke head coach Huub Stevens, saying, “He is pretty important. His temperament is vital for the squad.”
Jones also praised his hometown club and former employer, Eintracht Frankfurt. The recently-promoted side has been the surprise package of the season so far, and finds itself in third place, even on points with Jones' Schalke.
“Nobody expected them to be that strong," he admitted. "The season is long, but no one can take those points away. For now they did the best of their possibilities.”
Asked if he agreed with his reputation as a "bad boy," due to his record of controversy on the pitch, the defensive midfielder responded:
“People who know me well are aware of the fact that I am quite calm. But I argue in favor of having an opinion and to represent it – respectfully of course. I grew up with the responsibility of a family father. On the pitch it is a completely different thing – it is where I have to give athletic 110 percent!”
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