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May 18, 2013
• MAGE SOLAR Stadion, Freiburg im Breisgau
Referee: F. Brych
• Attendance: 24000
J. Schmid 54'
J. Draxler 20'
J. Schuster 57' (own goal)
And that's full-time!! Jens Keller's men have made it. It was a nervy afternoon in Freiburg, but they've produced a thoroughly professional performance to seal their place in the Champions League! 2-1, Schuster's own goal seals it.
90' + 4'
Freiburg have corner. Even if they score from this, it might be too little too late...
90' + 3'
Kruse launches a free kick well over the bar. That might be an unfitting end to his final game in a Freiburg shirt.
90' + 2'
Incidentally, there will be four minutes of injury time. Schalke are almost home.
90' + 1'
Uchida concedes a corner which comes to Schmid at the edge of the box but he snatches at his shot and it flies over the bar.
Seconds left - and Barnetta is on for Huntelaar. The grandslam finish doesn't look to be on any more.
Schmid launches one deep into the box, Kruse heads it across goal and Makiadi's touch takes it away from Flum. This is agonising!
Hildebrand is taking an age to take a goal kick. This looks like Schalke might just hold on.
Last-chance saloon for Freiburg now - can they do something memorable?
Freiburg fans are booing Schalke again - this time for time-wasting. But you can hardly blame them, can you?
Marco Hoger is on for Julian Draxler. Keller is certainly being conservative now.
Hearts-in-mouths moment for Schalke there. Makiadi takes the ball around Hildebrand and looks to have a tap-in but pulls up when he notices the offside trap.
Kolasinac makes a superb run into the Freiburg box and looks to play it across the face of goal but Ginter gets it away.
KRUSE!!! What a shot! The German lets fly from 25 yards but his effort flies just wide of the post. Hildebrand looked to have it covered but that would have been some goal!
Yellow Card Cedrick Makiadi
Raffael's in the wars, isn't he? Cedric Makiadi becomes the next man to foul the Brazilian and picks up a booking.
Somehow, Fuchs' free kick finds a Schalke man, with Huntelaar completely unmarked on the penalty spot, but the Dutchman's header trickles wide. He should have done better there again.
Yellow Card Matthias Ginter
And now Ginter has picked up a booking for a rather cynical tug on Raffael. Schalke are hardly committing men forward for this one.
Left-back Christian Fuchs has come on to play as a (very) unorthodox right-winger. I think Keller might be looking to hold what he haves.
Freiburg fans are livid as Santini's cross strikes Neustadter in the box - they want a penalty but it would have been harsh in the extreme, particularly given what's at stake.
Yellow Card J. Farfán
Jefferson Farfan picks up the first yellow card of the afternoon with what can only be described as a forward's challenge on Matthias Ginter.
What a second half this has been. The defending at both ends has become decidedly more nervous and both teams have had more chances. Schalke have the lead in bizarre circumstances but Freiburg have got life in them yet.
Jones! the corner comes in from the right and the American rises highest to meet the ball but sends his header over. This is getting nervy.
SO CLOSE! Huntelaar almost puts the game out of sight, picking up a pass from Draxler and shooting but Baumann gets a toe to it and it goes wide. Great save!
At the other end, Uchida completely misjudges a cross and allows Kerk to take possession but the youngster's shot hits the side-netting.
Own Goal Julian Schuster
GOAL!! Schalke are back in front in strange style! Jones pressures the SCF defence and wins the ball. His eventual shot is going wide, but it hits Hohn, strikes Schuster, and goes in! Unbelievable!
Now that makes things interesting. One goal without reply either way will mean Champions League football - who will score next?
Goal Jonathan Schmid
GOAL!!!! Freiburg are back on level terms! The corner is cleared and Schmid picks up the loose ball, running into the Schalke half and feeding Rosenthal, who forces a save from Hildebrand. However, the Frenchman picks up the loose ball and bundles it home. All square now!
FARFAN!! Raffael touches it into the Peruvians path and the former PSV man has a dig, but Schuster deflects it wide.
Sorg becomes the latest Freiburg player to try a cross but his one doesn't even his the side-netting - it goes high and wide. Freiburg need to do a lot better in these situations.
Uchida makes a great interception as Freiburg look to play Kruse in down the left - that could be massive.
Kruse gets down the left once more and crosses, but it trickles disappointingly into the side-netting.
Baumann almost gets himself into a spot of hot water as he waits to pick up for a pass despite Jones' presence.
Kolasinac sees a long ball over the top out for a throw-in successfully.
And we're back! Can Schalke seal their Champions League place? The next 45 minutes will decide everything...
We're almost back - it will be 45 nervy minutes from here on in.
And that's half-time. Schalke are just 45 minutes from the Champions League thanks to Draxler's strike? Can they hold on? Stay tuned to find out.
Farfan gets down the right and tries to square it to Huntelaar, but Hohn nips in and clears the ball. good move again from Schalke.
Bundestrainer Joachim Low - himself a Freiburg legend - is in the crowd today. I'm sure he was very happy with Draxler's strike.
Freiburg have another set piece with which to test Schalke but first Matip, then Kolasinac get the Kruse delivery away from goal.
Another great chance for Schalke!! Raffael worms his way into the Freiburg area before unleashing a left-footed effort which balloons over. He's got to do far, far better than that from those positions!
What a chance!! Schalke could be in the clear here, with Jones latching onto a great through ball in the Freiburg box but the American can only find the onrushing Baumann.
Raffael become the latest Schalke player to hoist a clearance away from his own goal. Keller's men would certainly take a one-goal lead at the break...
HUNTELAAR!! Raffael strides forward and feeds the Dutchman but the ball is on his left foot and he can only screw it into the side-netting. How Schalke need another goal
There's been a big goal at the bottom of the Bundesliga - Augsburg have taken the lead against Greuther Furth - as it stands, Fortuna Dusseldorf are heading for a relegation playoff.
Schmid gets down the right and crosses it but Howedes gets across and boots the ball into row Z. That's the spirit!
Great play! Kruse gets down the left and crosses it and Rosenthal dummies it to Schuster can strike it, but Hildebrand gets behind the ball. Plenty of life left in Freiburg!
Kerk steps up and takes the free kick and goes straight into the wall. The home fans appeal for a penalty, but nothing from the officials.
Back at the Mage Solar Stadion, Matip has fouled Kruse and Freiburg have a free kick 20 yards from goal. Big moment here.
Some other scores from around Germany - Gladbach are beating Bayern 3-0, Frankfurt are 2-0 down to Wolfsburg and Hoffenheim are a goal down against Dortmund.
That goal has really calmed Schalke's nerves. They are looking much more confident in the Freiburg half and the hosts haven't really troubled their goal since. Looking good for Schalke so far!
Assist Klaas-Jan Huntelaar
Goal Julian Draxler
GOAL!!! Schalke take the lead out of nowhere! The free kick proves futile but when they go forward again, Huntelaar squares it to Draxler, who curls one past Baumann from the edge of the area - great strike!
Schalke have a free kick in a very dangerous area after Sorg scythes down Uchida on the right wing - big chance for the visitors to nick a goal.
Kerk nods it down, almost setting Schmid clear on goal, but Howedes, who has been excellent so far, intercepts the ball.
And now, at long last, Schalke seem to be taking a bit of control of the ball. Julian Draxler and Klaas-Jan Huntelaar have had very quiet games - S04 need to get the ball to their star men.
As this one trundles on, Schalke are having less and less possession. Freiburg have gone about this in calm fashion but the visitors haven't woken up yet.
Great defending! Matip just about gets a toe to Schmid's cross to Kruse to stop Kruse pouncing. Hildebrand gathers the ball, gratefully.
So, both teams have shown early signs of life here, but Freiburg have arguably edged it. Frankfurt are losing to Wolfsburg, meanwhile, which puts a dent in their Champions League hopes.
At the other end, Farfan hangs in a set piece which Baumann elects to punch but he doesn't get much purchase on it, but a foul is given in the aftermath.
SO CLOSE!! Freiburg swing in a free kick from the let which Kolasinac clears but when the ball comes back into the danger area, Hohn lifts it over the bar from a matter of yards - he should have done far better there!
Makiadi touches it through to Rosenthal, who would be in on goal, were it not for a superb challenge from Benedikt Howedes - that's what a captain is for!
Kerk, who is certainly a surprise selection on the Freiburg left, is caught offside as he tried to latch onto a long ball.
Freiburg have been in control of possession thus far - but it's been only in midfield.
And we're off! Schalke get the game started - 90 huge minutes ahead!
So then - predictions time, folks! Who will get the fourth and final Champions League place in the Bundesliga? Is Jens Keller the right man to lead Schalke? How ugly would Freiburg in the Champions League be? Send them to - @eniskoylu - on Twitter!
SCHALKE: Hildebrand; Uchida, Howedes, Matip, Kolasinac; Neustadter, Jones; Farfan, Raffael, Draxler; Huntelaar
FREIBURG: Oliver Baumann; Mujdza, Ginter, Hohn, Sorg; Schmid, Schuster, Makiadi, Kerk; Rosenthal, Kruse
Line-ups to follow!
Hello! Welcome to Goal's coverage of Schalke's trip to Freiburg. A win for either side will guarantee them Champions League football, while a draw for S04 should see them into Europe's top competition, provided that Frankfurt don't beat Wolfsburg by five goals.
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