Our football match prediction:
Thanks to a 3-0 win over PAOK in Thessaloniki Schalke moved one step closer to booking their place in the Europa League last 16. Die Knappen have been producing fine performances in all competitions ever since the club chiefs reinforced the club in the January transfer window and it has to be noted that they are on a five-game unbeaten run ahead of the visit of PAOK. Schalke are with one foot in the next round, but coach Markus Weinzierl must warn his men against complacency. A man to watch in the home team will be January signing Guido Burgstaller, who has been in a splendid form in 2017. The Greek outfit have little to play for in Wednesday’s football match at VELTINS-Arena and, taking everything into account, we predict that the visitors will return home empty-handed. You should have in mind, though, the two teams played out a 1-1 draw in their last meeting in Gelsenkirchen (2013).
Highligted Player (Benedikt Howedes):
Benedikt Howedes is a German international who plays for Bundesliga side Schalke 04. The 187-cm-tall defender is a product of Schalke’s youth school and he played for the reserve team between 2007 and 2009. He made his debut for the first team in the 2007/2008 Bundesliga campaign, but he played no more than 6 matches for die Knappen during the season. Howedes plays for the German national team as well and he made his Germany debut against Uruguay on 29 May, 2011. The Schalke defender represented Joachim Low’s team at the 2016 European Championship finals. Howedes is a centre back, but he is capable of playing as a right back as well. However, at the start of his senior career he played as a left back. He is well known for his brilliant first-time passing and he often scores headers. During his youth career the German defender played for the likes of TuS Haltern and SG Herten-Langenbochum. Howedes was struggling with injury in the 2015/2016 Bundesliga campaign and as a result, he played no more than 15 matches for Schalke in the league.
Highlighted Team (PAOK):
PAOK are regarded as one of the most famous clubs in Greece. The club’s biggest rivals are Olympiakos, but they have a great rivalry with local rivals Aris as well. The Double-headed eagle play their home games at Toumba Stadion Thessaloniki and the capacity of the venue is 28 803. PAOK are a real force to be reckoned with at home, but they often struggle when playing on the travels. The club won their first Greek Superleague title in 1976 and nine years later their clinched their second domestic trophy, finishing the season three points clear of Panathinaikos. Speaking of the club’s European success, the Black and Whites made it to the UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup in the 1973/1974 season, but they were outplayed by Italian giants Milan in the two-legged tie. PAOK were founded on 20 April, 1926 and they play their home games in black and white shirts and black shorts. The club’s away colours are white.