We take a look at ten players who could be making possible moves away from the Bundesliga in January, including Xherdan Shaqiri, Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Johannes Geis.
The future of the Swiss international is the biggest transfer story in German football, with the exception of Marco Reus’ potential departure from Borussia Dortmund. That’s because there is little doubt about the 22-year-old’s capabilities; the attacker would be a sensation at any other club that is not stocked with superstars in every position.
Arriving from FC Basel having gained a brimming reputation after sinking Manchester United in the Champions League, Shaqiri has spent just two-and-a-half seasons in Munich. It has been clear from early on that the young attacker would be surplus to requirements under both Pep Guardiola and Jupp Heynckes.
Shaqiri’s next club could be in England with previous interest from Liverpool and Arsenal. His flair and creativity would be an affordable coup for any of the top Premier League sides, while there would be expected interest from Italy, and one or two German clubs.
Guardiola admits in the book written by Marti Pernaru that the young Dane had something different – his tactical knowledge was profound for a teenager. He could be the next Sergio Busquets, according to the former Barcelona coach.
But in a midfield stocked with established internationals, Hojbjerg, 19 years old, wouldn’t be afforded much time to settle in the first-team.
A loan move within Germany is realistic – similar to that two-year-loan spell Toni Kroos had at Bayer Leverkusen. Hamburg could be frontrunners.
The Mainz defensive midfielder has been watched by AC Milan this season, but a more likely approach could come from Borussia Monchengladbach. While an agreement in January would seem to be unlikely, the fact that Christoph Kramer will return to Bayer Leverkusen at the end of the season may prompt the Foals to move quicker to sign the 23-year-old.
By doing so, Geis would have time to adapt to the style of Lucien Favre’s team who lie third in the Bundesliga and have qualified for the Last 32 of the UEFA Europa League.
With over 200 games of league experience, 29-year-old Jansen would likely have no problems finding a new club in January. The left-back has been out of the team recently at Hamburg, losing his berth initially through injury.
But with Matthias Ostrzolek and Ronny Marcos, younger and more reliable options, Hamburg might look to cash in on the German international. Interest, so far, has come from Bayer Leverkusen in the summer and most recently from Portuguese giants Benfica.
But Jansen would be a competent player for any English Premier League club, also, and would be available for a few million pounds.
Aaron Hunt gave 11 years’ worth of service to Werder Bremen and in recent seasons had dragged them just enough away from relegation. So you couldn’t begrudge him a move to Champions League-aspiring Wolfsburg this summer.
The 28-year-old hasn’t quite settled at the club, however. The attacking trident of Kevin de Bruyne, Ivan Perisic and Vieirinha hasn’t been displaced even at this point of the season, while Maxi Arnold has almost identical traits, but has the advantage of being younger, sharper and quicker.
If Werder Bremen can snap the attacking-midfielder up on loan, he’d bolster their survival chances ten-fold – and the same can be said for many other mid-table clubs in England and Germany.
Abdul Rahman Baba
You’d be hard pushed to find a more valued signing in Europe than Abdul Rahman Baba.
The 20-year-old left-back was poached from Greuther Furth, but has looked more like he was pinched from Bayern Munich. Mature and consistent, Baba is the first-choice left-back for Ghana’s national team and has been a stalwart for Augsburg this season who are pushing for a spot in Europe.
“It’s not a topic at the moment,” the 20-year-old said after the 2-1 win over Gladbach. But there has been no shortage of transfer talk in the German media. AS Roma from Italy are touted as a possible destination and considering the outcome of Ashley Cole’s move to Rome, interest in Baba is probable.
As strong as he is, Kevin Trapp will find it tough to oust Felix Wiedwald at Eintracht Frankfurt. Trapp, the previous number one, has been out injured for several months but will return to action in the near future.
One could make a formidable argument to say Trapp is the closest keeper to Neuer in the Bundesliga. The 24-year-old
Frankfurt might look to hold out for six million, but for an English club more so, Trapp would be a steal at this point in the season.
Turkish champions Galatasaray have previously been scouting the 23-year-old who has found himself on the bench most of the time under head coach Josef Zinnbauer.
Arslan is an energetic box-to-box midfielder who sits well in a 4-3-3 formation and would most likely be available for a move considering the financial problems at the club.
While the Germany Under 21 international – now 24 – has suggested he wants to stay in Germany, there has been interest from England, Turkey and Italy, including Arsenal.
Arsenal might be a step too high for Arslan, but he’d cost basically nothing for a team like the Gunners.
Maxim could be dubbed as a ‘luxury’ player and there’s no room for passengers in a team, which has been taken over by fear of losing.
The 24-year-old Romanian, though, is an exceptional talent. He resembles a magician performing at his peak, one of the few Bundesliga players whom you could describe as unpredictable. He’s full of tricks, appreciates space beautifully and can create a promising attack out of nothing.
Why he hasn’t been given more game-time at Stuttgart is bemusing, to say the least. It appears that Maxim is determined to finding a role at the Mercedes-Benz Arena, but he’d be an interesting target for others, especially if he isn’t playing.
Above all, what do struggling teams want? Goals.
It’s even stranger from the outside to see Ibisevic out of the team at Stuttgart. The 30-year-old Bosnian has scored over 101 goals in 239 games for Hoffenheim, his former club, and the Swabians.
The experienced campaigner in the Bundesliga has lost his spot since the arrival of Huub Stevens who has demanded higher work-rate in attack, even opting to play a right-winger up top. If that’s any indication, then Ibisevic – and Maxim – have little future at struggling Stuttgart.
Ibsevic will be looking for regular first-team opportunities at this point of his career, so a transfer in January could be on the cards.