Our football match prediction:
Kunshan Sports Center Stadium will host Thursday’s football match between Schalke and Southampton. The two teams face each other at the Club Super Cup and a very entertaining game is on the horizon. Schalke will be without important defender Matija Nastasic, who has yet to overcome his injury, but, no doubt, coach Domenico Tedesco will use this friendly to test as many players as possible. Dusan Tadic, on the other hand, left Southampton to join Ajax, but new boss Mark Hughes has a number of high-profile footballers to choose from. Both sides are likely to adopt an attack-minded approach in Thursday’s clash and we predict that fans are going to see goals galore in Kunshan. When the two teams met in a friendly five years ago Schalke recorded a 2-0 win over Southampton, but share of spoils is on the cards this time out.
Highlighted Player (Shane Long):
Shane Long is an Irish international striker who has so far made over 60 appearances for the Republic of Ireland national team, scoring more than 15 goals in the process. The forward began his professional career at Cork City, but only made one league appearance for the club ahead of the switch to Reading, where he would go on to spend next seven years. During that time, Long established himself as one of the best Irish strikers plying their trade in England, and also went on to represent West Bromwich Albion, Hull City and Southampton. Despite not exactly boasting an enviable goalscoring record for a centre forward, Long was always held in high regard by both managers and his peers, with his incredible work rate and never-say-die attitude winning him plenty of admirers. Long will also go down as one of the most prolific scorers in the history of the Republic of Ireland national team, which he represented at the Euro 2012 and Euro 2016 finals.
Highlighted Team (Schalke 04):
Schalke 04 are a professional football club founded in 1904. Die Knappen (The Miners) compete in German Bundesliga and they have won seven domestic titles. Schalke have clinched five German Cup trophies as well, while lifting the UEFA Cup title in 1997. The German club defeated Italian side Inter on penalties in the title game and that was the last time the final of the competition was played in a two-legged format. Schalke 04 play their home matches at Veltins-Arena, the stadium that has been the home of the team since 2001. The capacity of Veltins-Arena is 62,271. It is well known that Borussia Dortmund are Schalke’s main rivals and the Ruhy neighbours face each other in the Revierderby. The likes of Klaus Fichtel (477), Norbert Nigbur (355), Rolf Russmann (304), Klaus Fischer (295), Olaf Thon (295) and Herbert Lutkebohmert (286) are the players with most appearances for die Knappen. The colour of Schalke’s home kit is blue.