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FOOTBALL

Schalke to reshuffle line-up for Manchester United clash

Schalke 04 boss Ralf Rangnick will reshuffle his team for Tuesday's Champions League semi-final against Manchester United after losing in the Bundesliga on Saturday.

Schalke to reshuffle line-up for Manchester United clash
Rangnick - plenty to ponder. Photo: DPA

Schalke hopes of a morale-boosting win were dashed when they were forced to swallow a 1-0 home defeat to Kaiserslautern.

Germany goalkeeper Manuel Neuer was beaten in the 42nd minute by Kaiserslautern’s Srdjan Lakic.

Neuer had told the Royal Blues on Wednesday he would not renew his contract which expires at the end of next season.

Looking towards the visit by United, Rangnick is expected to revert largely to the side which beat holders Inter Milan 2-1 in Gelsenkirchen in the quarter-finals on April 13.

Spanish play-maker Jose Jurado is expected to start, as will defender Benedikt Hoewedes – who scored the winning goal against Inter – after sitting out Saturday’s defeat with an injury.

The midfield of Greece’s Kyriakos Papadopoulos, Germany’s Joel Matip, Alexander Baumjohann and Spain’s Jurado is expected to line up again to face United after Rangnick had tried out a totally different quartet against Kaiserslautern.

“I selected the team in such a way, because I wanted to win both of our games (against Kaiserslautern and Manchester United),” said Rangnick.

“In the Champions League, we will select a different starting eleven again.”

But despite his bluster, Rangnick could not hide his disappointment with the defeat.

“If you look at the entire 90 minutes, we had the better chances,” said Rangnick.

“But unlike Kaiserslautern, we did not use our possibilities.

“I am not dissatisfied with the defeat. The team put in a decent performance, this was the first time this particular team has played together, which has to be taken into consideration.”

Meanwhile, Schalke’s bosses are also set to sit down with veteran striker Raul, 33, who is is enjoying a stellar season. They want to talk about an extension to his contract which runs until 2012.

Former Real Madrid star Raul is the Champions League all-time top goal-scorer having netted 71 times.

“We had a first meeting with his agent around the first game against Inter and there will be a further meeting around the United game,” said Schalke’s director of sport Horst Heldt.

“We would love to have him play another few seasons with us – that would make us proud.

“He is an honest man and must be handled with respect.

“We are grateful that he is with us, he is world class and humble, even though he has achieved nearly everything in football.”

AFP/hc

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FOOTBALL

British football teams allowed to skip Germany’s quarantine for Euro 2020

Germany's government announced on Tuesday it will allow England, Scotland and Wales to enter the country without quarantine to play at Euro 2020 despite a recent rise in cases linked to the Delta variant of Covid-19 in Britain.

British football teams allowed to skip Germany's quarantine for Euro 2020
One of the venues for Euro 2020 is in Munich. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Sven Hoppe

The three teams could potentially reach the quarter-final held in Munich on July 2nd.

If that were the case, they would be exempt from the rule that travellers from the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland must currently observe a 14-day isolation period due to the virus strain of concern – Delta – first identified in India.

“The people accredited for the European football Championship are exempt from the quarantine obligation, even after arriving from an area impacted by a variant” Berlin said in a statement.

“This exemption concerns all the people who have been accredited by the organising committee for the preparation, participation, the holding and the follow-up of international sporting events,” it added.

The exemption does not include fans, who will be obliged to follow German government self-isolation rules.

Germany declared the UK a ‘virus variant area of concern’ on May 23rd due to rising cases linked to the Delta variant in parts of the country. 

READ ALSO: Germany makes UK ‘virus variant area of concern’: How does it affect you?

This reclassification came just seven days after the UK was put back on Germany’s list at the lowest risk level, and barely a month after it was taken off all risk lists completely.

The ban was put in place despite the UK’s relatively low Covid rates as a precautionary measure.

A general ban on entry is in place for people coming from countries on the ‘virus variant’ list – such as India and Brazil – the highest of Germany’s risk categories. 

There are some exceptions for entering from these countries – for example German residents and citizens. However, anyone who does enter from Germany is required to submit a Covid-19 test before boarding the flight and must quarantine for 14 days on arrival, regardless of whether they are fully vaccinated or not.

READ ALSO: Germany’s new relaxed quarantine and testing rules after travel

Euro 2020 starts on Friday as Italy host Turkey in Rome with the Bavarian city hosting three group games as well as the last-eight match.

Around 14,000 fans will be allowed into the Allianz Arena for the fixtures.

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