English League 2

Worthington challenges players

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Mon, 18 Mar 2013 19:28:00

Schalke are determined to keep Julian Draxler at the club next season and general manager Horst Heldt feels UEFA Champions League qualification could prove decisive.

Draxler has enjoyed another promising season for Schalke and the 19-year-old impressed during the club's run to the last 16 of the Champions League.

Reports in Germany have suggested that Chelsea and Manchester United, along with Italian giants AC Milan and Inter Milan, are interested in the midfielder.

The Germany international has a further three years left on his contract and Heldt is eager to make sure that Draxler is happy at Schalke.

"Julian Draxler is under contract at our club and he is an important player," Heldt told BILD.

"We want to keep him at our club for as long as possible. It's our obligation to ensure he feels fine being with us.

"From our point of view, it would be helpful to win a berth in the UEFA Champions League for next season. This would be a boost!"

Schalke are currently in the final Champions League spot in fourth spot in the Bundesliga, but are only above fifth-placed Eintracht Frankfurt on goal difference.

Former Northern Ireland boss Worthington has seen the Minstermen take just one point from three games since he replaced the sacked Gary Mills at the beginning of the month.

"It's a man's game and it looked like men against boys," Worthington said after his side's ninth league defeat of the season at Bootham Crescent left them one point above the relegation zone with seven games to play.

"People are paying their hard-earned money coming to support the team and what they got back was simply not good enough.

"If I said anything else, everybody would think I was off my rocker.

"I've been in the game long enough to know when I'm getting sold short and when players are not performing. It's a big test and it will be interesting to see who stands up to it."

Worthington, who steered Norwich to the Premier League in 2004, added: "We need self-belief and a willingness, which is probably at the top of the list, to keep York City in the league.

"A lot of players are out of contract in the summer and maybe it's easy for them to under-perform and walk away and not worry about where York City will be next season, but that's not good enough.

"They are getting paid by this club and by the supporters. They've got to repay that with results."

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