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Schalke 04 courting Sebastian Rudy

Vice-champion Schalke want Bayern Munich’s underutilized regista to guide their team to sustained success.

MUNICH, GERMANY - APRIL 25: Sebastian Rudy of Muenchen looks on as he arrives prior to the UEFA Champions League Semi Final First Leg match between Bayern Muenchen and Real Madrid at the Allianz Arena on April 25, 2018 in Munich, Germany. Photo by Simon Hofmann - UEFA/UEFA via Getty Images

If the Schalke 04 have their way, Sebastian Rudy could be suiting up in blue—royal blue—again as soon as next season. A new report by Bild (via TZ) claims that Schalke have already contacted Rudy and inquired whether a loan might be possible in the coming season.

Schalke have considerable gaps to fill in their starting lineup after sporting director Christian Heidel apparently alienated 22-year-old central midfielder Max Mayer—not to mention Leon Goretzka. Both will leave Schalke on free transfers this summer.

Rudy in the meantime is apparently waiting to learn whether incoming coach Niko Kovac envisions a place for the regista in his plans. After starting strong as a key figure in Carlo Ancelotti’s 4-3-3 system, Rudy has been largely confined to the bench since Jupp Heynckes took control of the club.

At Schalke, Rudy would not only feature in the starting lineup again (he was the linchpin of Julian Nagelsmann’s Hoffenheim team that reached the Europa League last season), but he would also have the opportunity to play in Champions League matches, and not merely off the bench, if at all: by finishing in second place this season, Schalke are guaranteed an international berth. They absolutely need a quality central midfielder.

Rangers v VfB Stuttgart - UEFA Champions League
Rudy celebrates scoring for Stuttgart in 2009.
Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

VfB Stuttgart are also reportedly heavily interested in signing Rudy. Rudy was a product of Stuttgart’s youth academy, where he played for seven years before his transfer to Hoffenheim and stardom. Rudy has said in the past that he does not want to leave Bayern Munich after a single season, but the allure of international competition may be hard to resist. In addition to the Champions League, regular playing time as a starter would also bolster Rudy’s hopes of establishing himself on the German national team.

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