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Football | Germany

Magath bemused by Schalke's poor form

Coach Felix Magath admits he is bemused by Schalke 04's poor Bundesliga form after his 10-man side slumped to a 2 1 defeat at Nuremberg in the wake of their Champions League win over Benfica.

Schalke are lying second from bottom after defeats in five of their seven Bundesliga games and and are showing none of the form which saw them finish second to Bayern Munich in the German league last season.

Schalke lost at Nuremberg on Saturday as Royal Blues midfielder Jermaine Jones was sent off on 53 minutes for a second yellow card.

With a numerical advantage, Nuremberg scored through midfielder Mike Frantz on 62 minutes before Dutch striker Klaas Jan Huntelaar scored his fifth goal in six games to equalise for Schalke on 74 minutes.

But a header by Nuremberg defender Andreas Wolf with seven minutes of normal time remaining left Schalke in 17th place with just four points.

After last week's 2-0 win over Benfica, Schalke are second in Group B behind leaders Lyon after two games in the Champions League, but Magath is far from happy with his side's Bundesliga form.

"I'm not satisfied with our performance. The game (against Nuremberg) was nothing like our Champions League game against Benfica," fumed Magath.

"We gave a good account of ourselves against the Portuguese and we worked hard. But against Nuremberg, however, we held back.

"In the first 45 minutes, we controlled the game and put ourselves in a few scoring positions.

"The sending off of Jermaine Jones hit us hard.

"We conceded the second goal after making some serious errors, which I can not explain myself.

"I had the feeling that one or the other player's heads were in the clouds.

"We now have two weeks to process this defeat now.

"Many of our players are now involved with their national side, so it will be hard to analyse the game together."

Schalke's next Bundeliga game is against bottom side Stuttgart on October 16 and their next Champions League match is against Hapoel Tel-Aviv on October 20.


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