Schalke: The incredibly frustrating Mark Uth still somehow exhilarating

Schalke 04, Mark Uth (Photo by Ralf Treese/DeFodi Images via Getty Images)
Schalke 04, Mark Uth (Photo by Ralf Treese/DeFodi Images via Getty Images) /

Schalke has never seen the best of Mark Uth up close. Only from afar. Which makes him equal parts incredibly frustrating and yet still exhilarating.

Is it possible to talk too much about the Schalke striker situation? Probably not. Not when there are so many questions that have yet to be addressed and somehow—somehowMark Uth has become a question yet again with his frustrating yet exciting play while on loan at FC Koln.

Since joining Schalke, Uth has been the very definition of a dud. Three goals and one assist in over 2000 minutes of play. Now, maybe you could attribute that to acclimating. After all, after joining Hoffenheim from Heerenveen, his 20 goals and 11 assists turned into eight goals and one assist. And then seven goals three assists.

And then he hit his payoff with 14 goals and eight assists, a tally that Schalke would love. Which is why they bought him. Only to see that number disappear and a paltry two goals and one assist to pop up in its stead. The worst season he had ever had.

What could Schalke 04 expect from Mark Uth return?

The acclimation argument goes out of the window ever since he joined FC Koln on loan in January. In exactly 600 minutes across seven appearances, Uth has never failed to contribute a goal in any appearance.

Seven straight matches with at least one goal or assist. All in all, his tally is at an even split, four goals and four assists, which is just maddening, since he did at Koln in 248 minutes what it took him nearly 2000 minutes to do at Schalke.

As such, Koln are obviously quite keen on keeping Uth beyond his loan expiration this summer, but Jochen Schneider begs to differ, indicating a desire to have Uth back.

Hard to argue either side, and also hard to figure out what it is that prevents him from replicating his goal-scoring prowess at the Veltins. But in the same way that he is incredibly frustrating, the fact that he has gone and proven himself again makes him just as exhilarating a player as he has always been. As long as we can figure out what’s missing when he’s wearing the Royal Blue.

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Uth has a release clause around €10m, which isn’t a lot for Koln to pay. It would be surprising if they didn’t pay that. But it would also be surprising if he went to Koln and contributed a goal in seven consecutive matches. Oh wait, he did that already. Maybe Schalke can get the best out of him yet. Stranger things have happened.