Yevhen Konoplyanka will make an impact at Schalke - Christian Heidel

Schalke director of sport Christian Heidel has backed Yevhen Konoplyanka to become an important player for the club.

Konoplyanka, 27, joined Schalke on loan from Sevilla in August, following the arrivals at the club of Nabil Bentaleb, Baba Rahman, Benjamin Stambouli, Coke, Naldo and Breel Embolo.

Seven matches into the Bundesliga season, however, and the Ukraine international has yet to make a real impact for the Royal Blues, who continue to struggle with only four points gained so far.

"Yevhen is a good lad, he's got a good character," Heidel told DerWesten. "He will score many goals for Schalke. I am convinced he'll break through. Kono can do things others can't."

Konoplyanka so far has only started one match for Schalke, coming off the bench in three league games and two Europa League ties.

With Embolo expected to be sidelined for the majority of the season following an ankle injury and Eric-Maxim Choupo-Moting also currently out, Konoplyanka could come into the starting lineup when Schalke take on Krasnodar in the Europa League on Thursday.

"In the aftermath of the [Augsburg] game, Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting had complaints about his right knee, with an assessment showing inflamation to the knee joint," the club said in a statement, adding that he will not make the trip to Russia and instead remain in Germany for further treatment.