Roger Schmidt has explained why Cody Gakpo is not going against Galatasaray. In the Champions League preliminary round, the reserve captain of PSV starts on the bench and Yorbe Vertessen takes over the left winger role. According to the Eindhoven trainer, Gakpo did not get enough time in preparation and will likely be used as a weapon’ in the final game.
“Why isn’t he playing? Well, he has only trained for a week now”, Schimdt opens when asked. “He played his last match on behalf of PSV against FC Utrecht (1-1) last season and then he played a few minutes at the European Championship.” Gakpo made his debut in the Dutch national team against Macedonia and played a total of thirteen minutes. Although he was not present in the PAOK-1-0 win, there is a good chance he will play against Galatasaray.
“For today, I think it’s best to have him on the bench as a weapon,” Schmidt continues. “Later in the game I can bring him in so that there is more energy in the game. It is best to use it when they (Galatasaray ed.) are tired. Tired. He is extremely dangerous and has a lot scoring potential. This is my preferred way of approaching the match. We know our playing style. We are well prepared and we expect an intense match”, concludes the coach.
Jan Boskamp reacts on the sideline to Vertessen, not Gakpo, covering the left-wing. “At the moment I can certainly understand that choice. He switched Gakpo halfway through last season, and that was a completely different story. Now I understand the situation because you are still preparing for next year. They also have a very strong bank now, thanks to Gakpo & Mohamed Ihattaren,” added the analyst.