FC Schalke 04 have a tailor-made replacement for Alexander Nubel at the conclusion of the 2019-2020 season in Markus Schubert, but they still have interest in adding one more talented goalkeeping prospect to the mix.
Alexander Nubel made his official decision earlier in December, as the FC Schalke 04 goalkeeper and captain has decided to sign a contract with Bayern Munich after his current deal with the Royal Blues expires at the end of the 2019-2020 season. It seemed like the club would be able to keep Nubel, but the 23-year-old has decided he will be OK with being Manuel Neuer’s backup next season.
Nubel’s decision means Schalke have their own difficult decision to make. They could very well strip him of the captaincy and bench him for an equally promising goalkeeper in Markus Schubert.
Signed this summer from Dynamo Dresden, the 21-year-old Schubert has shined in his appearances since Nubel’s four-game suspension began. Schubert would be the unquestioned starter in 2020-2021 after Nubel leaves, but Schalke still need to sign more young depth behind Schubert so that there is always a “next man up”.
And that next man up could come from FC Köln.
According to a report from Express.de, via Transfermarkt, Schalke have interest in Köln goalkeeping prospect Julian Krahl, who is 19 years old and has no first-team appearances for the newly-promoted Bundesliga side to this point.
Krahl has mostly been playing for Köln’s second team, but he is highly-regarded by Schalke, who have built up a reputation for being one of the best clubs in the world at developing goalkeepers. After all, Neuer and Nubel have turned out pretty well.
The youngster came up the ranks through the Red Bull youth system with RB Leipzig before joining Köln in the summer. Transfermarkt places the Germany U19 international’s value at under 250,000 euros, which means he could be a bargain signing for Schalke either this winter or next summer, depending on how much they feel they need the goalkeeping depth.