Schalke call off China trip

The Royal Blues were due to travel to the Far East at the end of July, but since they were not sure of their berth in the group stage of the Europa League until Borussia Dortmund lost the DFB-Pokal final, they claim they no longer had enough time to arrange the tour properly.

At the same time, they pointed the finger at the agency who were due to organise the trip for them.

“Given the delay in the planning, we are no longer convinced of a trip to China being successful and without a hitch,” said club director Alexander Jobst.

“Opponents have called games off, there is no guarantee the games would be screened live on Chinese state television and we no longer have faith in the agency responsible with organising the trip.

“This led us to taking the decision to postpone a trip to China for our team.”

The trip was intended to boost the club’s brand in the Far East and try to win new sponsors, but Jobst says this was “no longer going to be possible in these conditions”.

“You have got to be top prepared for a trip like this for it to be a convincing success for the club in this new market,” he added.

Schalke currently have other concerns as they are yet to appoint a new coach to replace Roberto Di Matteo, who was relieved of his duties at the end of the season.

They sold Kyriakos Papadopoulos to Bundesliga rivals Bayer Leverkusen at the weekend and cannot yet identify and pursue their own transfer targets until the new coach has been appointed.

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