With a third of the 2015/16 season done and dusted, bundesliga.com is checking in with all 18 clubs to see where they are at after 12 matches.
So far, FC Schalke 04 appear to have adapted well to new coach Andre Breitenreiter...
The story so far
Schalke still had some open wounds to lick as they came into the season after their failure to qualify for the UEFA Champions League last term – something they are hoping to redress this time around, while maintaining a degree of caution with new coach Andre Breitenreiter not put under any undue pressure. Such caution, however, went out of the window after a 5-0 win in the first round of the DFB Cup over MSV Duisburg was followed by a 3-0 triumph over SV Werder Bremen in their Bundesliga opener. Four wins in a row from Matchday 4 to 7 saw the Royal Blues knocking on the door of second-placed Borussia Dortmund and while they may have slipped back a little since, the quest for a top-four finish is very much on track.
- Schalke have created more chances than any other side from set-pieces, with 61 shots on goal coming from dead ball situations.
- The Royal Blues have been particularly effective from corners, with an average of every 14th corner leading to a goal – a league best.
- Leroy Sane has been involved in a goal in five of Schalke's six wins this season.
- The 19-year-old is the league's quickest player, clocking up a top speed of 35 km/h (like Daniel Ginczek and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang) while he has won half of his challenges.
- Johannes Geis is Schalke's greatest source of danger, with 33 passes leading to shots on goal. His three assists were all corners.
While Klaas-Jan Huntelaar and Franco Di Santo have been working on refining their partnership in the Schalke attack, Leroy Sane has burst onto the scene, symptomatic of his many energy-fuelled forays forward, which have helped him net four goals and set up a further three this season. There is a buzz of excitement whenever the German U-21 international picks up the ball, no matter where he is on the field. His invention, pace, skill and close control suggest he can make something happen at any moment, and quite often he does just that.
Most memorable quote
"We were too sluggish in the first half and particularly slow with our passing.
Andre Breitenreiter's thoughts after Schalke drew 1-1 with FC Ingolstadt 04 on Matchday 11.
It was not only his set-piece wizardry which alerted Schalke to the former 1. FSV Mainz 05 midfielder, although that was certainly a welcome bonus of signing Johannes Geis in the summer. While yet to open his account for the Royal Blues, Geis has still carried a real threat, both with his set-pieces and in open play, supplying three assists and boasting a highly impressive pass completion rate of 81.3 percent.
Explore the ups and downs of Schalke's campaign so far by clicking on the link to our interactive standings.