- Konoplyanka arrives at Schalke from UEFA Europa League winners Sevilla.
- Winger was three-time Ukrainian player of the year.
- 26-year-old in Gelsenkirchen on a season-long loan.
They say good things come to those who wait: it took FC Schalke 04 until the penultimate day of the 2016 transfer window to bring in Yevhen Konoplyanka, a winger who is the perfect choice to fill the gap on the wing after the departure of Leroy Sane.
Having swapped Sevilla FC for Schalke and La Liga for the Bundesliga, the Ukrainian will look to wreak havoc not only at the VELTINS Arena, but also at grounds across Germany over the course of this season.
Arriving in Gelsenkirchen on a season-long loan from the UEFA Europa League winners, Konoplyanka certainly possesses all the attributes required to take on the role of being the Royal Blues' tormentor-in-chief.
A tricky winger capable of playing on both flanks and with a keen eye for goal, Konoplyanka has spent the majority of his career in his homeland, coming through the ranks at FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk - where he was crowned Ukrainian Footballer of the Year three times - before his 45 goals in 210 games there culminated in a 2015 move to Sevilla.
If a further 13 goals in 56 appearances for Ukraine were not enough to underline his goal threat, then eight goals and nine assists in his only season at the Andalucian club certainly removed any doubts as to whether the 26-year-old could cut it in an elite European league.
He more than lived up to his description as "one of the jewels of continental football” whilst at Sevilla, but the lure of Schalke was impossible to resist when Royal Blues sporting director Christian Heidel came calling.
Konoplyanka took to Twitter to post a picture of himself in his new number 11 shirt and a blue-and-white scarf around his neck at his new home. “It's great to be playing for such a great club with such wonderful fans and such a stadium," he said. "I'm hoping to play as much as possible."
The Ukrainian's elusive running and powerful finishing will add a layer of sophistication and unpredictability to Markus Weinzierl's side, a fact recognised by the Schalke coach. "We're delighted to have a fast, goalscoring midfielder, who can operate on either wing," the 41-year-old said upon confirmation of Konoplyanka's move.
Schalke fans will get their first chance to see Konoplyanka in action when FC Bayern München visit the VELTINS Arena on Friday night of Matchday 2.