Schalke: Jean-Clair Todibo has been the impact player in 2020

Jean-Clair Todibo of FC Schalke 04 (Photo by DeFodi Images via Getty Images)
Jean-Clair Todibo of FC Schalke 04 (Photo by DeFodi Images via Getty Images) /

Although he only played more than 45 minutes in four matches, Jean-Clair Todibo has been FC Schalke 04’s impact player in 2020 thus far.

There’s a chance FC Schalke 04 won’t get to benefit from Jean-Clair Todibo’s brilliance at center back when football resumes, because it seems less and less likely that the 2019-2020 season will be restarted. And the Royal Blues may not be able to afford the approximately 30 million euros it will take to purchase Todibo permanently from FC Barcelona.

However, fans should remain optimistic that something will get done, or even that Schalke will get another chance (read: year) to keep Todibo.

Because Todibo has been the team’s impact player in the calendar year 2020.

In the Hinrunde, Amine Harit was undoubtedly Schalke’s best player. But because of injuries, his own drop-off in form, and a formation change, Harit took a backseat to others like Weston McKennie.

Todibo became a starter after a serious injury to Ozan Kabak, who broke out as a superstar in the first half of the Bundesliga campaign after injuries to regular stars in defense Benjamin Stambouli and Salif Sane.

And after Kabak went down, Todibo showed that he’s also a young superstar at the center back position. He made so many wonderful plays on the ball, showing technical quality at the center back position that is quite rare. But for the fans that knew Todibo had experience as a defensive midfielder, they weren’t surprised to see Todibo skilfully weave his way out of tight positions or consistently make accurate passes.

If Schalke can hold onto both Kabak and Todibo in 2020-2021, they could have the world’s best young center back pairing, in addition to, at the very least, Sane as an experienced, top-notch center back. Stambouli’s future is uncertain, but he is quite good, as is Matija Nastasic.

Todibo and Nastasic formed a wonderful partnership at the heart of the Royal Blues defense in the Rückrunde of the 2019-2020 season.

According to, Todibo averaged 2 tackles per game and an astounding 2.2 interceptions per game across five appearances. And those averages were skewed by the fact that Todibo played the full 90 minutes in only one of those games.

Todibo is a superstar in the making. He is 20 years old but reads the game like a veteran of the Bundesliga. The man took to a new club and league with big responsibilities for a team ready to play European football, and there was absolutely no drop-off.

The France international was a commanding presence, recording at least five combined tackles and interceptions in his final three appearances of the season. He also completed more than 90% of his passes in the final two games, even winning successful dribbles with the ball at his feet.

Next. Harit is at his best when he can make mistakes. dark

Another year of Todibo would be a blessing for Schalke, as fans have thoroughly enjoyed what he brings to the table. If Die Knappen can dig up the money, they could have one of the world’s best defenders for years to come.