Schalke 04 captain Benedikt Howedes has revealed his excitement after signing a three-year contract extension that will keep him at the Veltins Arena until 2020.
The 27-year-old defender’s previous deal was set to run until the end of next season, but the Miners were eager to secure the services of one of their key players sooner rather than later.
Howedes is in his 15th season with the club, having joined their youth setup back in 2001, and has made over 200 Bundesliga appearances for Schalke to date.
He is currently sidelined with a thigh injury, but revealed his delight at extending his stay at the club that made him the player he is today.
“My heart was thumping when I put pen to paper,” Howedes told the club’s official website.
“Schalke 04 is a great club with amazing fans, a club I am thankful to for developing me as a youth player in the Knappenschmiede academy, giving me the opportunity to make my breakthrough in the Bundesliga as a youngster and handing me the role of captain early on.
“We have a young team full of potential and ambition. I want to continue shaping its future.”
The club’s heirachy was equally pleased to secure the services of their captain for the foreseeable future.
“We’re delighted that Benedikt has taken this step, as it is a sign of real commitment to Schalke 04 from a leading player,” added sporting director Horst Heldt.
“It shows that he has faith in our plans, in which he plays an important role as team captain and defensive stalwart.”