The summer transfer window officially closed on Monday with a host of talented players joining the Bundesliga, including foreign talents such as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Thiago Alcântra and Kevin-Prince Boateng. But, there was some loss as well for the German sides as big name players either made a move outside the league or retired from football. Here is my dream team consisting of players who bid farewell to Bundesliga during the offseason.
Oka Nikolov (From Eintracht Frankfurt to Philadelphia Union)
After spending his entire career in Eintracht Frankfurt for the past nineteen seasons, the 39-years-old shot-stopper left the Eagles for a move to the Philadelphia Union of MLS. The Macedonian International played over 400 official games for Eintracht and until the club acquired the service of the up-and-rising Kevin Trapp, remained the Eagles first choice goalkeeper for decades. Nikolov got the proper farewell at the end of last season as he replaced the injured Kevin Trapp for the last eight league matches to help Frankfurt achieve their European dream.
Serdar Tasci (From VFB Stuttgart to Spartak Moscow)
The former German International was Stuttgart’s skipper until his surprising move to the Russian Premier League. He even featured in the opening weeks of the new season and the sudden departure left a big void at the back for Thomas Schneider’s team. Veteran Karim Haggui sign for Stuttgart at the transfer deadline day to replace the ever-reliable Tasci, making him the third player to join Die Roten from Hannover in the transfer window.
Christoph Metzelder (Retired)
Another former Manschaft player to bid farewell to the Bundesliga after retiring from Schalke. . The central defender’s career took an early finale after successive injury problems. Metzelder played for arch rivals Borussia Dortmund before the Royal Blues, sandwiched by his stint at the Spanish giants Real Madrid. Metzelder’s football career isn’t short of medals as he was able to lift the league and cup trophies in both Germany and Spain. He was also the regular starter for Germany in the 2006 World Cup and Euro 2008.
Daniel Carvajal (From Bayer Leverkusen to Real Madrid)
The fullback’s sensational form for Die Werkself last term earned him a recall from Real Madrid who took advantage of the buy-back clause from his transfer deal to Bundesliga a season earlier. Carvajal assisted a remarkable feat of eight goals in his first season at Leverkusen and with his performance in Germany properly noticed by Madrid’s officials, the former Spain U21 right fullback’s Bundesliga experience come to an end.
Michal Kadlec (From Bayer Leverkusen to Fenerbahçe)
The Spaniard is not the only fullback to leave Leverkusen at the transfer window as Czech international Michal Kadlec finally called it a day to his Bundesliga career. Kadlec played over hundred matches for the Bundesliga side and has represented his country in almost fifty matches. His last season in Germany, though, was interrupted with injury as he only featured in 14 league matches.
Anatoliy Tymoshchuk (From Bayern Munich to Zenit St. Petersburg)
Ukraine captain Anatoliy Tymoschchuk return to familiar territory with his summer move to Zenit St. Petersburg after finding it hard to get playing time with the talent-rich Bayern Munich club. The defensive midfielder was on the team roster for every competitive match last season except for two outings, but only featured for a mere 589 minutes on the field. Nonetheless, the unprecedented triple at the end of the season remains a personal milestone for the 34 year-old midfielder.
Sergio Pinto (From Hannover 96 to Levante)
Despite struggling to find his way into Schalke’s senior squad for years, Sergio Pinto’s Bundesliga career took a sharp upward turn following his move to Hannover, as he orchestrated the Lower Saxony’s side midfield for the past seven years. The Portuguese played over 200 matches in the Bundesliga and was a major contributor in Hannover’s fairytale achievement of Europa League play in two consecutive seasons.
Kevin De Bruyne (From Werder Bremen to Chelsea, loan return)
The Belgian wizard was one of the best performing Werder players, if not the best, during the club’s rather difficult 2012/2013 season, recognized by winning the Bundesliga Young Player of the Year award. He only missed a single match during the entire campaign and scored ten goals, including the strike that guaranteed the club safety from relegation. Jose Mourinho wasted no time in acclaiming his importance to Chelsea and he subsequently returned to his parent club despite offers from top Bundesliga sides.
André Schürrle (From Bayer 04 Leverkusen to Chelsea)
Joining de Bruyne at Stamford Bridge is German National team player André Schürrle from Leverkusen. The dazzling winger has a ferocious long-range shooting capability along with a thundering acceleration. Schürrle played a huge role in Mainz’s breakout season three years ago and returned to Leverkusen with a great deal of character that saw him making his way into the national team roster. His move to London was rumored for much of the past season, and after helping Die Werkself to a top three finish, he finally signed for reigning Europa League Champions Chelsea.
Marko Arnautović (From Werder Bremen to Stoke City)
The final days of the transfer window assured that there will be no Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s version of the Bundesliga. The Austrian winger has an undeniable talent, but his behavior is questioned by many. His former boss Jose Mourinho at Inter Milan once reflected that he is a fantastic person but has the attitude of a child. Arnautovic’s fine form in Bremen’s jersey produced a marvelous hat-trick in Hoffenheim, but it was followed by a rather silly red card in Hamburg weeks later after kicking the referee with a ball,
Mario Gómez (From Bayern Munich to Fiorentina)
The old-school style striker opted for a move abroad to Fiorentina this summer and already has shown his usual scoring touch after grabbing a brace in a Serie A match last week. Super Mario had a sensational one goal per eighty minutes ratio last season and scored 200 goals for Stuttgart and Bayern just in 330 matches. That remarkable feat wasn’t enough to secure a role upfront from incoming coach Pep Guardiola as the Spaniard gave priority to the new Mario, Mario Mandžukić, just like his predecessor Jupp Heynckes did. On the contrary, national team coach Joachim Löw still retains his faith in Gómez as he didn’t make any room on the national roster for last season’s Bundesliga top scorer Stefan Kiessling. Gomez joins Serie A having won three Bundesliga championships, two Pokal competitions and, of course, the Champions League.
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