Freiburg vs. Schalke: Final score 1-2, Königsblauen qualify for Champions League

Christof Koepsel

Schalke looked troubled for all of three minutes during their Champions League-clinching win over Freiburg, who finished fifth in the Bundesliga and will play in the Europa League.

Schalke only needed a draw away to fifth placed Freiburg to book a spot in next year's Champions League, but did better than that and never looked to be in too much trouble. A Freiburg goal caused some brief uneasy moments, but Schalke quickly hit back and went on to a comfortable 2-1 win.

Julian Draxler scored with an excellent strike in the 20th minute to put Schalke ahead, combining with Klaas-Jan Huntelaar to net the opening goal. Draxler made a run to Huntelaar's right and picked up a pass into his feet, then quickly turned towards the goal and placed the ball past Oliver Baumann at the far post from just inside the penalty area.

The tied appeared to turn in the 54th minute, when Freiburg equalized on an excellent counter attack. Max Kruse set up a chance for Jan Rosenthal at the end of the move, but Timo Hildebrand came up with a save from close range. Unfortunately for Schalke, no one was tracking the trailing run of Jonathan Schmid, who finished off the rebound.

Freiburg's joy at the equalizer and chances of securing the result they needed didn't last long. Just three minutes later, Julian Schuster scored a comical own goal. Jermaine Jones beat Baumann with a shot to the far post, but Immanuel Höhn was there to clear off the line. However, he didn't see Schuster running back, and Schuster didn't seem to be paying much attention to what was going on. Höhn's attempted clearance went right to Schuster, who nudged the ball into the back of his own net, sealing Freiburg's fate.

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