Manchester United vs Schalke 04: Game-Changers and Super Subs

JackmanContributor IMay 4, 2011

Who is on the bench that could make a difference?
Who is on the bench that could make a difference?

With the 2011 Champions League 2nd Semi Final underway, Manchester United are going in strong to try and finish off the plucky German side. 

But away from the starting lineups, I noticed a big name on the Schalke bench.

Huntelaar, formerly of Ajax, Real Madrid, AC Milan and others was on.

I had no idea he played for Schalke, and when I realised he did, I expected him to start.

He was only a few seasons ago a hot prospect to sign with clubs such as Manchester United, Schalke and Chelsea.

Former Netherlands, Barcelona and Bayern Munich manager Louis van Gaal once said of Huntelaar, "in the penalty area, he is the best player in the world, bar none."

So why is he only on the bench?

Schalke also have the experienced Ali Karimi on the bench. He was capped 112 times by Iran, and his experience may be called on.

Meanwhile on the red bench, United have world class game changers in Ryan Giggs and Javier Hernandez. With both having an impressive season, these two can instantly fit in if they replace Berbatov or Gibson up front or fit into midfield.

Vidic and Evra, longtime first teamers in the defense are also on the bench, with their help being a last resort.

Comparing the two sides, United have the strongest bench—but don't rule out Schalke.

Who will come off the bench? Will Huntelaar prove effective? How will Darren Gibson fare upfront?

Feel free to let me know your thoughts by leaving a comment below