Schalke: Benito Raman and 5 players to watch in the Revierderby

Schalke defender Jonjoe Kenny (Photo by SASCHA SCHUERMANN/AFP via Getty Images)
Schalke defender Jonjoe Kenny (Photo by SASCHA SCHUERMANN/AFP via Getty Images) /
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Schalke CM Weston McKennie
Weston McKennie of FC Schalke 04 (Photo by Ralf Treese/DeFodi Images via Getty Images) /

CM Weston McKennie

With Mascarell and Serdar out for some time, Weston McKennie is the new star man in Gelsenkirchen. The American midfielder is coming off his biggest performance of the season, scoring a goal out of nowhere against TSG Hoffenheim and providing his usual hard work in midfield. McKennie’s chance creation has increased in light of the injuries around him, and his leadership will be necessary on the road against Dortmund.

He won’t have it easy against the midfield pivot of Axel Witsel and Emre Can, but if anyone can make the difference against Dortmund in all phases of the game, it’s McKennie. He has the chance to be a special player for Schalke, and this Revierderby could be another breakout performance from the 21-year-old.

RB Jonjoe Kenny

Fullback Jonjoe Kenny received credit for the assist against Hoffenheim, and he improved defensively against the fellow Europa League hopefuls. Kenny will have a much bigger challenge on Saturday against Dortmund, as he’ll have to help the flexible back five cope with the threat of an in-form Raphael Guerreiro, who has become one of the world’s most enviable wing backs.

Defensively, Guerreiro has been better than expected, but defending has never been the Portugal international’s forte. Kenny’s strength and pace could give Guerreiro issues. Schalke have been needing to receive more from Kenny on offense in recent weeks, and he can provide the energy. If he can also create more chances for the forwards, Kenny could have a major performance on a grand stage this weekend.