Borussia Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke horrified at the prospect of another relegation for rivals Schalke 04

Hans-Joachim Watzke
Hans-Joachim Watzke / Jürgen Fromme - firo sportphoto/GettyImages

Borussia Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke has stated that he is keeping his fingers crossed for arch-rivals Schalke 04 as they battle to avoid relegation from the 2. Bundesliga.

It has been another dismal season for Schalke 04, who are in real danger of getting relegated from the second division of German football. The Royal Blues find themselves in 14th place in the 2. Bundesliga standings, just three points clear of the automatic relegation spots.

Schalke were relegated from the Bundesliga at the end of last season, and back-to-back relegations would be an unthinkable scenario for them. The Gelsenkirchen-based club made the UEFA Champions League round of 16 just five years ago, but now find themselves in real danger of playing in the third division of German football next season.

Hans-Joachim Watzke is horrified by the prospect of Borussia Dortmund's U-23s team facing Schalke 04 next season if they are relegated to the 3. Liga. During his appearance on the Spielmacher - Der EM-Talk mit Sebastian Hellmann und 360Media podcast (via Sky Sport), the BVB CEO said, "Schalke are a powerhouse of German football, who have of course also done a lot of things wrong in the last decade. But their situation hurts me, despite our rivalry."

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"When you see a club of their size still fighting against relegation in the second division, I'm keeping my fingers crossed that they stay in the 2. Bundesliga. Because the idea of our second team playing against Schalke in the third division next year is a horror prospect for me."

Borussia Dortmund and Schalke 04 share one of the most fiercest rivalries in German football. Known as the mother of all derbies, the last edition of the Revierderby took place in March 2023, with the two sides playing out a 2-2 draw. And unless Schalke can manage to find their form in the next seven games, they could well end up having to face Borussia Dortmund II in the 3. Liga next season.