Fortuna Düsseldorf, having already added 16 new players to the 2. Bundesliga squad that gained promotion last May, have now introduced veteran presence with the signing of Ukrainian international Andriy Voronin and Greek defender Stelios Mazelas. Meanwhile, SC Paderborn 07, who kick off their 2012/2013 season this Friday when they visit Hertha BSC Berlin, have added two strikers on loan to bolster their attack.
Voronin and Mazelas join Fortuna Düsseldorf
Ukrainian international Andriy Voronin comes to Fortuna Düsseldorf on a one-year loan deal from Dynamo Moscow. The 33 year-old is no stranger to German football, however. Born in Odessa, the striker was in the youth side at Borussia Monchengladbach from 1995 and made nine appearances for the Foals’ senior squad before heading to 1. FSV Mainz 05 in 2000. The Ukrainian has also played for 1. FC Koln, Bayer Leverkusen and Hertha Berlin, as well as the EPL’s iconic Liverpool club before heading to Moscow in 2010. Voronin made 63 league appearances for Dynamo, scoring 15 goals. He has played in a total of 364 matches during his career in Germany, England and Russia, scoring 108 goals. Voronin has also earned 74 caps for the Ukraine since 2002.
According to Voronin, F95 Head Coach Norbert Meier was a primary reason for his loan
Norbert Meier was the manager who promoted me from the youth team and handed me my Bundesliga debut, so that did help sway my decision. Now I’m just looking forward to playing in this league again
Fortuna Sporting Director Wolf Werner commented
We are pleased to have signed a striker like Andriy, someone who has enjoyed a lot of success in the game and his career already. He is a player of quality and we have no doubt that he will show his abilities as a top goalscorer for us as well
Both Voronin and Greek defender Mazelas were part of their country’s respective squad for the 2012 Euro tournament, although Mazelas did not feature in any matches for Greece. Mazelas, a 6’4″ central defender, comes to Düsseldorf from Greek side PAOK. The 27 year-old has been with PAOK since 2003 and has made 192 appearances in all competitions, including 18 European contests for PAOK over the last three seasons. He has two caps for the Greek national team, making his debut in 2010 against Senegal. Mazelas signed a two-year contract with Düsseldorf, costing a transfer fee of 500,000 euros.
Meier stated that
Stelios Malezas is exactly the type of experienced central defender that we were looking for.
Both Voronin and Malezas should be in F95’s preseason camp in the Netherlands by Wednesday. Mazelas will wear the #4 jersey while Voronin will have the #30 on his red-white kit.
Paderborn Get Hofmann, Yilmaz
Paderborn, who have lost much of their scoring punch from last seasons’ strong run, have picked up Scbalke’s Philipp Hofmann and Mainz’ Deniz Yilmaz on loan for the season. Hofmann, a tall forward who turned 19 years old in March, signed a professional contract with Schalke in December, 2011 that runs through June, 2014. He has been a prolific scorer at the youth level and in the regional leagues.
Paderborn Coach Stephan Schmidt stated:
I know Philipp very well from my time in Wolfsburg. He is a goal threat with a great deal of presence inside the penalty area, especially with his ability to head the ball and his strong left foot. He is the type of forward we currently don’t have on our squad
This is one loan deal that especially looks like a win/win/win situation for Paderborn, who desperately need striker help, while Hofmann himself who should get an opportunity to get some playing time in a very competitive league as he appears ready for a step up in competition, but would perhaps see little time with Schalke’s first team this season.
Yilmaz, 24, was born In New-Ulm and played 115 matches for Bayern Munich reserves between 2005 and 2011. He joined Mainz a year ago but found it difficult to find a spot on the senior squad. His loan to Paderborn includes an option to buy. The 5’11” striker got off to a fine start with Paderborn, scoring a goal in the recent test match against Werder Bremen.
Schmidt on the acquisition of Yilmaz
Deniz is a very agile, aggressive and one of the quicker offensive players. He not only wants to score goals, but also has skills in buildup. He’s been used in various positions in the past, giving us more options in attack
Yilmaz has also made eight appearances for Turkey’s U-21 squad, scoring three times.