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  • By Alessandro Schiavone

German ex-QPR flop ruins Tottenham target's day in 2-2 Bundesliga draw

From Alessandro Schiavone at Veltins Arena


Schalke 04 2-2 Eintracht Frankfurt


QPR misfit Sebastian Polter saved the day…and perhaps the season for Schalke 04 as his 85th equaliser gave the fallen Bundesliga giants a lifeline in their quest to retain their top-flight status. 

 

Injured for most of the campaign, it was the experienced German’s only second hurrah and the first in over eight months. But it couldn’t have come at a better time as Schalke are fighting for their lives, sitting only two places higher than relegated ex-Tottenham star Kevin Prince Boateng’s Hertha Berlin at the bottom. 

 

To avoid going down, Polter and his laborious Schalke side need the stars to align though. They have no choice but to pull off a shock at RB Leipzig while hoping that VFB Stuttgart don’t win their game in hand at Mainz today and against TSG Hoffenheim in six days’ time. On top of it, they have to rely on Bayer Leverkusen doing them a favour by holding VFL Bochum to at least a draw at Vonovia Ruhrstadion. 

 

Yesterday the now 32-year-old centre-forward did what he so rarely pulled off in his 18 months at Loftus Road when he caught out the visitors’ defence to clinically tap home Mohr’s perfect delivery from the left. His introduction gave Schalke 04 a new impetus and threat.

 

Eleven goals in 56 appearances playing for QPR in the Championship are not exactly legend material. But the forgotten man now has the chance to make himself immortal at one of Germany's best-supported clubs should he take Man City’s Champions League victims Leipzig down and keep the 2011 Champions League semi-finalists in Germany’s top division. 

 

Yet despite Polter grabbing the headlines, Tottenham target Daichi Kamada’s performance should and cannot go under the radars. Because if the thought of relegation is increasingly eating away at Schalke, the 26-year-old Japanese is responsible for it. 

 

The Japanese international, who is also wanted by AC Milan and BVB Dortmund, scored his 9th goal of the season when his not-unstoppable swerving effort deceived goalkeeper Schwolow. 

 

And he almost turned the game completely on its head on his own.

Yet he was a fraction too late when Ulineaia’s cross came in. He made contact with the ball but not enough to bundle it over the line. Yet his movement and reading of the game were simply too good and hard to ignore. 

 

He was a menace throughout and difficult to stop as when Kraus had to foul him to stop him after he wriggled clear in the first half. And his no-look pass with his back to goal to release Aurelio Buta into space in the second half was sensational.  

 

A typically modern Japanese player who combines quality on the ball and industry off it, his high pressing in the 67th minute to prevent Schalke’s Jenz Moritz from playing out was testament to his dedication. And his temper, a rare quality in introverted Japanese players. He didn’t take it well that the linesman had spotted a foul and began shouting at him. Having strong personalities is something Tottenham are short of and his addition could change that. 

 

Kamada is a player who has to be kept in check all the time because he’s everywhere. Going to sleep on him could come back to cost opponents and there’s so much he excels in. He can receive the ball in the pockets, attacks the far post, always looks up to find overlapping full-backs and doesn’t take more than one or two touches if he doesn’t need to. His vision is excellent too and it appears that his legs never tire. 

 

He is not the kind of devastating player who takes your breath away and nowhere near as free-scoring as prime Son-Heung Min.


But he has so many qualities up his sleeve making him unquestionably one of the most-sought after free agents in world football this summer.


However his status as a free agent will come at a cost as his wage demands could jump as a consequence. But if Son follows Lucas Moura out the exit door Kamada is the man to fill their boots at the depressed Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. 

 


Schalke 04 

 

1 Schwolow- 5 Van den Berg- 6 Krauss- 9 Terodde- 10 Zalazar- 19 Karaman- 20 Sharke- 25 Jenz- 27 Brunner- 30 Kral- 41 Matriciani 

 

 

Eintracht Franfkurt 

 

1 Trapp- 2 Ndicka- 8 Sow- 9 Kolo Muani- 15 Kamada- 17 Rode- 18 Toure- 24 Ulineia Buta- 25 Lenz- 27 Gotze- 35 Tuta-Silva Melo 

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