Domenico Tedesco was delighted with his side’s 1-0 defeat of Hertha Berlin on Saturday but expected more from their second-half showing.
Marko Pjaca scored the game’s only goal at the VELTINS-Arena in Gelsenkirchen to secure all three points and move the club to second place on the Bundesliga standings.
It was a third consecutive victory for Tedesco’s charges, as third-placed Borussia Dortmund slipped to third with their second successive 1-1 draw in the league.
After the game, the FC Schalke 04 boss told his club’s official website: “It was extremely important that we played cleverly. We did that before the break.
“The first half was good, but the second was bad. We know that and we need to learn from it.
“In the second half, lots of factors came together. The forwards were tired and were therefore unable to defend as much.
“On top of that, we weren’t winning the second balls often enough. The headers that Naldo won weren’t falling to Schalke players, instead Berlin were winning those balls.
“If you don’t win the second ball, you don’t have much possession. We need to go over that all again. In the end, we’re happy with the win, but Berlin could definitely have taken something from the game.”
Goalscorer Pjaca added: “It was great to score my second goal at the VELTINS-Arena.
“I feel very happy at Schalke and am enjoying my time here. We created a lot of chances in the first half because we had lots of possession. In the second half we let Berlin bring the game to us, which made things quite tense towards the end.”