New coach at Schalke 04: Frank Kramer is used to suspicion

Mike Buskins was not physically present, but he was always a sponsor of the event. Schalke 04 had already invited Frank Kramer to introduce the new coach, but before he was allowed to present his ideas, he first had to explain how he would deal with his predecessor. Officially, Mike Buskins is now a dependent on Kramer’s coaching staff, but as the person responsible for promotion to the Bundesliga, he deserves cult status, and has yet to be canonized because Pope Francis – unlike his historical predecessor John Paul II – has yet to sign a request. Membership with Knappen.

Büskens, Büskens again and again, was said at the Tuesday afternoon press conference. How will the new coach deal with the old champion who, as promised, returned to his old job as an assistant coach after the promotion had been achieved? “The human, personal approach to Mike is fantastic, and there’s nothing in between,” Frank Kramer said, reassuring skeptics.

It is a good thing that German professional football is a small world where everyone has bumped into each other at some point. Kramer and Buskins, for example, are related to the fact that both were successors to the other. Kramer replaced Büskens at SpVgg Greuther Fürth in 2013, and Büskens took Kramer’s place again two years later. Other participants at that time in Franconia were: Gerald Asamoah in his final days of professionalism and Reuven Schroeder as sporting director at Fürth.

Now they’re all reunited in the traditional theater in Gelsenkirchen, Kramer’s appointment as head coach after nearly three months of reading the candidate feels like a conceptual draft. Sporting director Schroeder, 47, put the commitment of his esteemed acquaintances into a philosophical context for the club: “We made the community strong last year,” he said, and Kramer, as a “team player,” would agree with that idea: “He is the one who leads The group, but also – which is very important – allows things to happen. We depend on our people – and now we’ve found a head for it.”

“Cheap kramer”? Headlines like these don’t make him nervous, says the new coach, “that motivates me.”

He confirmed that he also contacted other candidates. What he left in the dark, on the other hand, is whether these candidates would prefer to accept other offers that might have been better paid and less risky than a job with the financially limited climber. Sport director Peter Knabel noted that Schalke had to move in a “dynamic market”.

The pictureZeitung greeted the new coach with the not-so-glamorous nickname “Bilge Kramer” and thus suggested that the club opted for a cost-effective solution. But the tabloid is not the only skeptic in society. Featuring smaller titles and less prominent activities, Kramer’s biography features Schalke 04 as an adventure. He played for Bayern Munich, but only for the amateur team. He was already a national coach, but only with the DFB juniors, and almost became an assistant to world champion Jogi Loew, but then Thomas Schneider got the job.

Recently, Kramer had to leave Arminia Bielefeld after a mixed and successful engagement. Welcoming the suspicion “is not unknown to him,” he said, sounding faint and believable: “It motivates me to keep going.” He describes himself as “honest, sociable, open-minded,” and that is how he is talked about in the scene. He is said to know a lot about football. “Ambitious, passionate, and humble” is what defines Reuven Schroeder.

The job of the new coach is to land, and no one asks him more than 15th place. Kramer is also counting on goals from Simone Tyrudy. The centre-forward, such as Büskens a man of heroic stature – in contrast to his quests with rising Stuttgart and Cologne – can count on support. Kramer admitted: “I would be surprised if he didn’t score in the Bundesliga.”

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