Sunday 21 January 2018

Milito back for Inter

Jack Pitt-Brooke

Adrift in 11th place in the Bundesliga, Schalke 04 might be the weakest remaining side in the Champions League but, since the return of Ralf Rangnick last month, they might have the most interesting coach.

Rangnick is one of Europe's most imaginative tacticians, with a commitment to attacking football. He achieved promotions at Ulm 1846 and Hannover 96. He then took Schalke, whom he joined in 2004, to a second-place finish before his dismissal.

It was in his next job, at Hoffenheim, where Rangnick impressed the most. He joined when they were in the third tier of German football but, bankrolled by billionaire Dietmar Hopp, Rangnick dragged them to consecutive promotions and a spell at the top of the Bundesliga.

Rangnick resigned in January in protest at the sale of Luiz Gustavo to Bayern Munich. Now back in Gelsenkirchen, he faces Champions League holders Internazionale, whose Brazilian coach Leonardo denied that his side were favourites.

"Schalke are in the quarter-finals and even if they're not doing great in the league, we all know they will have bundles of enthusiasm and it won't be easy playing them," he said.

Striker Diego Milito, the hero of last year's final, is likely to return up front for Inter. (© Independent News Service)

Internazionale v Schalke 04,

Live, Setanta Irl / Sky Sports 4, 7.45

Irish Independent

Promoted Links

Sport Newsletter

The best sport action straight to your inbox every morning.

Promoted Links

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport