Schalke Lewis Holtby, the versatile midfielder who earlier this January signed a five-year deal with Tottenham, will now join the English club immediately instead of staying with the Gelsenkirchen through the remainder of the season as originally agreed upon. Meanwhile, Bundesliga clubs continue shuffling players in and out to strengthen their clubs, both on the field and off, for the remainder of the Ruckrunde. Mainz, Hoffenheim, Fortuna Düsseldorf and Schalke have all made moves over the weekend.
Holtby Heading to Spurs Immediately
The talented 22 year-old Holtby will begin his career at London club Spurs sooner than originally planned. A deal between Schalke and Tottenham has been worked out to allow the midfielder to began his career in England immediately instead of staying with his Gelsenkirchen club through the end of the season. Spurs are especially anxious to have Holtby with their squad after midfielder Sandro’s injury was determined to be season-ending.
The Spurs website featured the following announcement
We are delighted to announce that we have reached agreement with Schalke for the immediate transfer of Lewis Holtby
Schalke Sporting Director Horace Heidt added
We have found the best solution for all parties involved. Lewis had signalled that he was not reluctant to leave the club early and five months before the end of his contract FC Schalke 04 has received a decent transfer fee
Schalke are said to be bringing in Lyon’s Michel Bastos for a physical today. Bild reported that the Brazilian, 29, will sign a loan deal with Schalke through the end of next season with the Royal Blues holding an option to make the deal permanent.
Eugen Polanski to Hoffenheim, Mainz Acquires Belgian Defender
Veteran FSV Mainz 05 defender Eugen Polanski has signed with Bundesliga rivals 1899 Hoffenheim in recent days, and has already made his Sinsheim debut with his new club, starting and playing the entire 90 as a deep-lying central midfielder against Eintracht Frankfurt Saturday. Polanski’s contract with Hoffenheim runs through the 2014/2015 season.
The Polish international, 26, began his career in the Borussia Mönchengladbach youth system, making his senior team debut in February, 2005. The defender transferred to Spanish side Getafe in 2008, but played on loan with Mainz in the 2009/2010 season before being signed permanently by the German club in November, 2010. Polanski has made over 165 club appearances in Spain and Germany while earning 16 caps for Poland after playing with the German U-21 from 2005-2008.
Stated Hoffenheim’s Andreas Muller
Eugen Polanski has plenty of Bundesliga experience and tactically-speaking is well schooled. He brings that extra bit of stability that we undoubtedly need to avoid relegation
Mainz have also been involved in two other recent player moves, bringing in Danish defender Niki Zimling while sending Malik Fathi to Turkish club Kaysenispor on loan. Zimling, 27, is a defensive midfielder who most recently played for Club Brugge. The 5’9″ native of Tårnby, Denmark has featured with Brøndby IF, Esbjerg fB, Udinese and NEC before joining Club Brugge in May, 2011 on a four-year contract with an estimated transfer fee of €500,000. Zimling has earned 15 Danish caps following a lengthy youth career for Denmark, in which he featured almost 50 times. He was named Denmark’s U-21 Talent of the Year in 2006.
Fathi, 29, is a native of Berlin and of German-Turkish extraction. He had a lengthy stint at Hertha BSC beginning in 2003 with the senior club, before joining Spartak Moscow. A 2010 loan to Mainz became permanent the next season, with the left back making a total of 47 league appearances with the club. He also earned two caps with the German national team.
Compper Leaves Hoffenheim, Escudero to Getafe
To no one’s surprise, out of favor defender Marvin Compper has left Hoffenheim for Serie A’s Fiorentina. The 27 year-old product of Gladbach’s youth system featured more than 150 times for Hoffenheim in league play since 2008, but seemed to lose his bearings this fall and was demoted to the second team. Capped once by Germany, Compper is tied to Fiorentina through the end of June.
Meanwhile, Schalke’s Sergio Escudero will finish the season on loan to Getafe. Born in Valladolid on September 2, 1989,Escudero came up with Spanish club Real Murcia, making his senior club debut in 2009. He joined Schalke in the summer of 2010 for an undisclosed fee, and has featured in 12 league matches with the Gelsenkirchen club.
Düsseldorf Sign Ecudorian youth international
Fortuna Düsseldorf have reached across the Atlantic Ocean to ink Ecuadorian Cristian Ramirez, signing the youngster through June, 2016. The left back, who turned 18 years old in August, featured for Ecuador’s U-20 team in the recent Sudamerica tournament earlier this month in Argentina, and also represented Ecuador in the 2011 U-17 World Cup held in Mexico. The native of Santo Domingo, Ecuador has played his club football since August, 2009 for the first division side Independiente José Terán, where he has made over 50 appearances.
According to Fortuna chief scout Mark Ulshofer
We are pleased that we were able to sign Cristian Ramirez, although he at also other European clubs plenty of attention. He is a player with great potential, and has a good passing game. Even though he is very advanced already for his age, we know that we must give him time to acclimatise