Schalke’s youth ranks are churning up midfielders, with Levent Mercan and Nassim Boujellab coming through. Next up? Can Bozdogan.
When a club does something consistently time and time again, you begin to expect it. For Schalke, that something is promoting young creative midfielders. At a time when the midfield is in a state of flux with injuries, inconsistencies, and a lack of creativity, David Wagner has turned to guys like Levent Mercan and Nassim Boujellab to be potential solutions.
But if you’re like me, you want to know who’s next. Because a club like Schalke always has a next option. So while Boujellab and Mercan are still getting their feet wet in the Bundesliga for the first time, let’s look at the next teenage sensation we might see—Can Bozdogan.
Bozdogan joined Schalke from FC Koln last summer for a fairly hefty fee of $770k. For a teenager, that’s a chunk of a price to pay. And there’s a reason why.
Schalke have an assembly line of young midfielders, and next up is Can Bozdogan
Can Bozdogan wasted no time getting acclimated, as he became the captain of the U19s and continued right where he left off in the FC Koln youth outfit.
After accounting for eight goals and three assists across the Koln U17s and U19s, he traded the red for the Royal Blue and proceeded with four goals and three assists in 16 U19 appearances—his best statistical year to date.
It’s no small feat to jump from one youth outfit to another and improve as both a contributor and a leader, but Bozdogan has doe exactly that. If you want to compare him to someone(s) else at the club, look no further than the two guys already mentioned—Levent Mercan and Nassim Boujellab.
Both went through a similar production boom before being promoted to the senior club and by that standard, the only thing getting in the way of Bozdogan is that they are just a few steps ahead of him. However, Bozdogan does have a natural tendency to play attacking midfield, while Mercan and Boujellab can play central midfield too. For Bozdogan though, Nick Taitague might provide something of an obstacle too.
Seeing as how he’s just arrived, however, there is going to be nothing but time. He’s locked in until 2022 and we will start to see more and more of this kid sooner rather than later. That’s just the way that things work around here. Not to mention never knowing who else is staying or going above him.