Before conducting any analysis of Schalke’s Champions League campaign, congratulations are in order. Die Knappen were not expected to advance out of their group, much less come to within 180 minutes of the final. That they managed to reach the last four despite being in crisis all season long - experiencing a coaching change in March - speaks volumes for their spirit, confidence, and clinical play up until the Manchester United tie. And although punctuated by a humiliating 6-1 aggregate defeat, Schalke’s run - their best yet in Europe’s most elite competition - will be fondly remembered in the club’s history. For, in all likelihood, it will be the furthest die Knappen go in the Champions League for a very long time.