Hoffenheim have recruited SC Freiburg keeper Oliver Baumann, on a four year deal.
The 23-year-old is the Sinsheim club’s second transfer on the back of this season after they signed Pirmin Schwegler last week from Eintracht Frankfurt.
Baumann had been at Freiburg for 14 years and he made his professional debut on the final day of the 2009/10 season.
Although they avoided relegation this year, the goalkeeper is in need of a new challenge. Sporting director of Hoffenheim, Alexander Rosen, is impressed by both his experience and his talent.
“With over 130 appearances to his name and his undoubted quality as a player, Oliver Baumann will give us even more stability," he explained. “As a person, we're in no doubt that Oliver will be a great fit for our team as well. We're really happy he's chosen to join us.”
This season they finished eighth and although they have been admired for their attacking style, they have been woeful at the back but this is something that Baumann wants to change.
“Hoffenheim have set the league alight with their attacking game this season.” He said.
“I'll try to shore things up at the back and advance their style of play. I'm looking forward to the challenge.”
It’s a major move for the player as he switches over to a rival club after playing 131 matches for Freiburg and especially since Hoffenheim are a club regarded with mixed opinions. No transfer fee has been revealed by either club but Baumann has signed a deal that will keep him here until 2018.
Hoffenheim have been constantly in the spotlight ever since making their loud arrival in the top flight in 2008. In 2000, the club were in the fifth tier of German football but by Christmas of their first season in the Bundesliga, were top of the pile. Since then the club has been teetering up and down around the middle table mark however they are backed by heavy investment.
Their other signing, Pirmin Schwegler, leaves Frankfurt after spending five years at the club before later becoming Captain and he scored six goals in 127 appearances. The midfielder is also excited about this move as they are club who play an attacking brand of football and are nurturing young talent.
Kevin Volland is one of the young stars at the club and has been one of Hoffenheim’s most influential attacking threats. The Bavarian born striker has scored 11 goals this season and has earned himself a call up into Germany’s World Cup squad despite having never played for the national team.
His fellow strike partner, Roberto Firmino, could be going the other way. He was Hoffenheim’s top goal scorer this season with 16 goals - in fact he scored more goals than any other Brazilian in Europe this year, including Neymar, yet he won't be going to the World Cup.
It has been reported by the Daily Express that Chelsea want to sign the 22 year old to add to the purchase of Atletico Madrid striker, Diego Costa, as they look revamp their strike force. Fernando Torres looks to be going the other way to Inter Milan.
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