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May 15, 2013

Schalke chief fires UCL warning

Schalke CEO Clemens Tonnies has warned the club's players not to blow their chance of securing Champions League qualification when they take on Freiburg on Saturday.

The Royal Blues wasted a golden opportunity to tie up their place in next season's competition after losing 2-1 at home to Stuttgart on Saturday.

The Ruhr giants now need to avoid defeat against their direct competitors for fourth spot, Freiburg, who are just one point below them.

"Once again the players have shown they have not been 100% aware of their responsibilities as a Schalke player," Tonnies told SportBild. "They have one more chance against Freiburg. I expect nothing but complete dedication, commitment and the sheer will to take that chance. Then we will get even."

Tonnies believes it is down to the attitude of the Schalke squad that the club are having to go into the final day of the season still not sure of their own fate.

"If you have such a chance you cannot display such an attitude," he said. "It is about time the players meet their responsibilities for the club and fans. We have been noticing those problems for a while now."

Schalke left-back Christian Fuchs was still looking for an answer on Tuesday for the poor performance against Stuttgart.

"We could have had a really nice week and everyone would have been delighted," the Austria international, who started his first game since mid-March, said. "Now it is 'do or die' and we can only blame ourselves for it.

"Looking at it, we had a very good second half of the season. And it would be bitterly disappointing to have to let go of the fourth place on the final day of the season. We need to step on the pedal and should travel to Freiburg to take everything."

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