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VfB Stuttgart - Die Roten

Started on 21 February 2015 by LFC
Latest Reply on 26 February 2015 by Justice
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VfB Stuttgart - Die Roten

I've chosen Stuttgart because Neal told me to I think it will be a challenge to firstly work my way up to being one of the best teams in Germany and then ultimately venturing into Europe. Stuttgart have some very talented players like Alexandru Maxim and Timo Werner. Werner is also young, and Stuttgart possess a few decent prospects like Georgious Spanoudakis.

I'll be using Felix Magath as the manager, with his last job being at Fulham, where he oversaw their relegation to the Sky Bet Championship. He was capped at international level by West Germany on 43 occasions, and has a wealth of managerial experience in his home nation, managing the likes of Wolfsburg and Bayern Munich. He also had a previous spell with Stuttgart which lasted for three years.
What happened to Palace as I just read the update! Anyway, good start and good luck :)

The Squad

With the recent appointment of Felix Magath at VfB Stuttgart, there is new optimism with the fans of Die Rote. Before the new man gets a chance to delve into the transfer market for the first time since leaving Stuttgart for Bayern Munich in 2004, the team at Bild have compiled a summary of the main strengths inside The Mercedes-Benz-Arena.

#1 - Christian Gentner

The captain at Stuttgart since 2013, the 28-year-old midfielder has garnered praise from several pundits and is a German international, having last played for the current world champions in 2010. A very physical player, Gentner's tirelessness can often be a game changer.

#2 - Timo Werner

One of the biggest prospects in world football, Timo Werner has a huge future ahead of him, be it at Stuttgart or somewhere else. The 18-year-old has been capped at all youth levels of international football for Germany. He made his breakthrough last season with Stuttgart, making 30 league appearances over the course of the season and scoring four goals.

#3 - Alexandru Maxim

The attacking midfielder from Romania has been integral to Stuttgart's team since joining in 2013 but speculation persists that he may be setting off for Barclays Premier League side Everton. Felix Magath will want to do his best to keep the player, who is widely regarded as one of the team's best players at the young age of 23.

Changes ahead for Stuttgart as Reutershahn makes way for Gilvan Santos

VfB Stuttgart have announced the mutual termination of Armin Reutershahn's contract at The Mercedes-Benz-Arena. The 54-year-old held the assistant manager post prior to Felix Magath's return to Stuttgart last week.

Reutershahn had only been appointed as assistant manager in March this year, but with the new arrival in the shape of Magath, his job security was always at risk and he has left the club this afternoon "on good terms".

"VfB Stuttgart would like to thank Armin for the work he has done at the club during his short spell. He has left a mark on several of the players and we wish him well in his future ventures. When we offered Felix the opportunity to manage our club, he was very insistent on bringing in his own right hand man. We feel that by complying with his needs, the team will benefit from the positive relationships between the backroom staff, and if Felix can act so quickly to bring Gilvan in, there must be some belief in his choices from us. We can confirm that Armin has left the club on good terms after he expressed his gratitude to us this morning."

Those were the words of club chairman Bernd Wahler, who displayed his confidence in his new manager's choice of staff, however odd Gilvan Santos' appointment may seem at first glance. Throughout most of his career, the Brazilian has served as a fitness coach at teams such as Botafogo and SL Benfica. The only time that he actually held the title of assistant manager was for just one month at São Paulo.

Several players that he has worked with as a fitness coach, however, have spoken positively of Santos, with São Paulo captain Rogério Ceni praising his training sessions during his second spell at Morumbi last year. He has been unemployed for just under a year, having left the Brazilian club in September 2013.

Interesting choice of assistant manager, but then Francisco Ayesteran was a fitness coach and turned out to be an incredible ass man.

VfB Stuttgart transfers - Summer 2014

And now for a roundup of all of Stuttgart's summer transfers.


Jonathan Soriano, £3m

Jonathan Soriano was the first of Felix Magath's signings, penning a four year contract after joining from Red Bull Salzburg for £3m. The former Barcelona "B" striker captained the Austrian side and scored an impressive 50 league goals in 62 games. He was named the most prolific striker in Europe during his time with RB Salzburg. With this addition, Stuttgart have safety in numbers, with five in the first team.

Gustavo Zampuano, £31.5k

Brazilian youngster Gustavo Zampuano became the second name to join Stuttgart after signing from São Paulo for a measly £31.5k. With just three months remaining on his contract at Morumbi, Magath acted fast under instruction from new assistant manager Gilvan Santos, who recommended the young talent, who has been tied down for three years at The Mercedes-Benz-Arena.

Mahamadou Diarra, Free

33-year-old Mahamadou Diarra joins to offer plenty of experience to the team. The former Real Madrid player joins on a two year contract worth £4.5k per week. He arrives to find an already packed midfield, so he may only be used sparingly but the Mali international will be fully utilized by Magath in terms of advising younger players and helping them to up their game, which could prove as valuable a signing as any.

Kalilou Traoré, Free

Another Mali international, Kalilou Traoré joined Die Rote to serve as a backup to right sided midfielder Sercan Sararer following the departure of Martin Harnik to Newcastle United. Despite mainly being deployed as a central midfielder during his spells at the likes of Odense and Sochaux, Traoré, 26, has the ability to adapt to a few positions around the pitch, which could prove useful for Stuttgart.

Angelo Ogbonna, £2m

Finally, Italian defender Angelo Ogbonna put pen to paper on a three year contract after signing from Serie A champions Juventus. The 26-year-old is known for his outstanding physicality and will be a welcome boost to Stuttgart, who lacked quality in the centre back department. Ogbonna has been capped on nine occasions by the Italian national side. He did play sixteen times during Juventus' title winning season, but Massimiliano Allegri felt the time was right to move the player on.


Martin Harnik, £10.5m - Newcastle United

Austrian winger Martin Harnik was the only notable departure, leaving Stuttgart for a fee of £10.5m which could later rise to as much as £13m. While he was considered a key player, Magath clearly thought the tabled offer was too good to turn down, especially considering rumours of a small transfer budget prior to the sale of Harnik.
Great signings and the Harnik sale should make way for some good inclusions.

Alexandru Maxim: Sporting target?

VfB Stuttgart's Alexandru Maxim has fueled speculation about his future with the Bundesliga side by claiming that discussions have taken place between himself and Sporting Lisbon.

While neither Felix Magath or Sporting manager Marco Silva have yet to comment, Sky sources understand that there is truth in the Romanian midfielder's claims but that Sporting Lisbon are no longer interested in his services.

This will come as a relief for Magath, who is thought to have spoken privately with Maxim about the matter, agreeing to a sale if the right bid came in. However Stuttgart have no record of any bids coming in for the 23-year-old from either Everton or Sporting Lisbon.

The fee which Magath is understood to be asking for, should any bid be made in the future is around the £12 million mark.

With Stuttgart kicking off their league campaign against Borussia Dortmund next week, this revelation from one of their star players could not have come at a worse time. The players will have to put the news to the back of their minds as they prepare for what is sure to be a tough battle.

VfB Stuttgart - Pre-season results

Stuttgart 1-0 Stuttgart II
Daniel Ginczek (79)
Sven Ulreich, 7.4

Stuttgart 0-1 Pachucha
Dante Vargas (12)
Luis Alberto Felix, 7.4

Gossau 2-2 Stuttgart
Jerome Glauser (60), Swen Erni (75)
Timo Werner (31), Osei Owusu (84)
Josef Ponte, 7.6

Delemont 2-3 Stuttgart
Konstantin Hess (12), Dylan Jucker (63)
Michael Delprato own goal (41), Sercan Sararer (53), Daniel Ginczek (71)
Sercan Sararer, 8.2

YF Juventus 0-2 Stuttgart
Timo Werner (9), Alexandru Maxim (74)
Konstantin Rausch, 7.3

Lausanne-Sport 0-0 Stuttgart
Konstantin Rausch, 7.6

Lumezzane 0-1 Stuttgart
Daniel Didavi (45+1)
Antonio Rüdiger, 7.6

Juve Stabia 2-1 Stuttgart
Francesco Ripa (21), Fabio Caserta (39)
Antonio Rüdiger (45)
Fabio Caserta, 8.5

AC Prato 1-1 Stuttgart
Adama Fofana (87)
Alexandru Maxim (78)
Alexandru Maxim, 7.7

Stuttgart 1-0 Napoli
Adam Hlousek (48)
Adam Hlousek, 7.5

Stuttgart 3-1 Galatasaray
Timo Werner (1, 37, 61)
Wesley Sneijder (14)
Timo Werner, 9.5

One to watch

The consistent performances of Konstantin Rausch throughout pre-season were a pleasant surprise to many Stuttgart fans. The left back played well in several of the friendlies and could challenge Japanese fullback Gōtoku Sakai for the first team spot.

Nice start, good luck with Stuttgart! :)
Great pre-season, so many games though!
A decent pre-season, a little bit busy though. I like the cheap yet great signings, hope they do well for you. I'm curious to see how it works out for you with Stuttgart. :)

VfB Stuttgart - August Results

Felix Magath starts his Stuttgart career for the second time, picking up two wins from his first three games in charge.

VfL Bochum 1-3 Stuttgart
Yusuke Tasaka (75)
Jonathan Soriano (6, 62, 86)
Jonathan Soriano, 9.5

In Magath's first competitive game since leaving Fulham earlier this year, Stuttgart took on 2. Bundesliga side VfL Bochum at rewirpowerSTADION. Die Rote began the game very brightly and took the lead after just six minutes through new man Jonathan Soriano. The Spanish striker joined from Red Bull Salzburg in the summer and was able to make an instant impact as he turned Alexandru Maxim's corner into the net on the half volley.

Bochum began to get a foothold in the game but their work came to nothing just past the hour mark when Soriano netted for the second time. The goal came on the break, with Carlos Gruezo breaking down a Bochum attack before finding youngster Timo Werner on the left flank. The German continued forward on a remarkable run to the edge of the penalty area and attempted to swing in a cross but the defence dealt with it. Gruezo was first to react, however, and played a great pass into the box which found Soriano. It was smooth sailing from there and with just the goalkeeper to beat he curled it into the far post to extend the lead.

Stuttgart would get a scare later on when they left themselves exposed in defence. Captain Christian Gentner lost the ball in the Bochum half and the second division side capitalized. Wide man Piotr Cwielong received Adnan Zahirovic's long ball and played an inch perfect cross in towards Japanese forward Yusuke Tasaka who nodded the ball in to bring the deficit back to just one goal.

However, Soriano ensured that his debut would be remembered when he bagged his hat-trick late on. This time he picked up Sercan Sararer's short pass, before skillfully evading two challenges. Despite being off balance, Soriano managed to chip the ball over the Bochum goalkeeper from 20 yards. This win means that Stuttgart progress to the next round of the DfB Pokal, where they will face Holstein Kiel of the third division.

Borussia Dortmund 2-1 Stuttgart
Shinji Kagawa (8), Jakub Błaszczykowski (9)
Timo Werner (45+2)
Shinji Kagawa, 9.0

Both teams looked to get their Bundesliga campaign underway with the best start possible as Stuttgart traveled to Signal Iduna Park to face Jurgen Klopp's Dortmund. Early signs were not at all promising for Stuttgart, as BvB threatened Sven Ulreich's goal on several occasions. The breakthrough was made just before ten minutes had been played as former Manchester United midfielder Shinji Kagawa produced a finish from the top drawer. The chance seemed to be dead as the Japanese player ran away from the Stuttgart box, but a quick piece of skill brought him to the edge of the area where he struck a ferocious shot into the top corner. The goal could well be a contender for the Goal of the Season.

Straight from Stuttgart's kick-off, Dortmund made it 2-0. Another outstanding goal. Once again Kagawa had a part in it, running with the ball to the edge of the Stuttgart area before sending a lofted pass backwards to Polish winger Jakub Błaszczykowski. Błaszczykowski hit the ball first time on the volley from just past 30 yards, and Kagawa looked disappointed. The disappointment turned to complete shock moments afterwards, as the ball somehow found its way into the top left of Ulreich's net. Two brilliant goals from Dortmund were enough to give them the three points, but Stuttgart continued to fight.

Timo Werner, who replaced Jonathan Soriano up top for Stuttgart in this game, pulled a goal back for his side in first half stoppage time. Alexandru Maxim's 20 yard free-kick looked like it could have been another wonderful strike in this game but instead the Romanian hit the bar and Werner tucked away the rebound from six yards.

Stuttgart 5-1 FC Köln
Angelo Ogbonna (21), Sercan Sararer (38, 42, 85), Oriol Romeu (79)
Marcel Risse (68)
Sercan Sararer, 9.6

Following their defeat to Dortmund, Stuttgart were determined to get their first league win of the season in front of their own fans. Jonathan Soriano's place in the starting lineup was restored, with Werner being pushed out to the left wing. The game was quiet until Italian defender Angelo Ogbonna netted his first Stuttgart goal since joining in the summer from Juventus, heading Alexandru Maxim's corner into the roof of the net. Maxim provided another assist soon after. He received the ball on the edge of the area following Werner's short pass, and the Romanian tried an effort at goal. Timo Horn could only parry the ball into the path of Turkish winger Sercan Sararer, who had an open goal and finished with ease.

The game was wrapped up just before half time. Maxim whipped in another cross which was headed clear by the defenders but only as far as captain Christian Gentner, who controlled the ball on the edge of the area before chipping a pass forward to Sararer, who tucked it into the corner. There were appeals of offside but replays have since shown that the Turk's goal was legal. Köln pulled one back after half time when Yuya Osako played through Marcel Risse, who brilliantly curled the ball into the top right. Magath would have to wait for his first clean sheet. Sararer would get his hat-trick, but not before Maxim could make another contribution - swinging in a corner which Oriol Romeu expertly volleyed home. Sararer stole the show late on after Timo Horn was once again unable to deal with a powerful shot from Vedad Ibišević and the 24-year-old winger ghosted in to pick up the rebound.

A good start to the season, truth be told. The Dortmund game was always going to be tough and you did well to get a goal back after they scored twice very early on.

Jonathan Soriano speaks of his debut success

Making a good first impression isn't the easiest thing to do. But apparently, Jonathan Soriano has a knack for it. The recent Stuttgart acquisition netted a hat-trick in the DfB Pokal game against VfL Bochum - his debut - but says he has more to prove.

He was moved to the bench for the following game, a 2-1 loss to Dortmund but came on in the second half, unable to replicate the success in his first game. Despite his side winning 5-1 vs FC Koln, Soriano, 28, didn't make much of a mark on the game and was substituted for Bosnian striker Vedad Ibišević at half time. Fans of Die Rote will be hoping that Soriano, formerly of Red Bull Salzburg and Barcelona "B", is able to up his game to match the level of performance shown by him in the Bochum game.

Our team of Sky reporters have met up with the striker and quizzed him on a few issues.

Jonathan, how does it feel to be playing in the Bundesliga?

Well, it's a completely new experience for me. I've played it a little safe if I'm honest with myself. In the past I've played in smaller leagues, no disrespect intended. My time with those teams has benefited me hugely but I'm yet to seriously make an impression in one of Europe's top leagues. I felt I owed it to myself to push to that level and I'm a little disappointed I've been unable to grab a goal or two in the opening Bundesliga games.

What or who do you attribute your incredible debut to?

It's tough because Bochum aren't the strongest of sides. I don't think it's a huge achievement to score a hat-trick against them. But the win was important to the team, we progress in the cup, and I'll take three goals any day. The coaches have been great in my first month or so here, so I'd have to give them the credit.

Do you set yourself a target before each season? A lot of managers have an idea in their heads of how many they want their striker to score.

Felix isn't that kind of manager. He expects good things from me, but I always feel pressurized in having a set amount of goals that people want you to score. Of course I want to give my all to the team and hit the back of the net as much as possible, but that's not always possible. I'm glad that Felix understands that. When I'm not on my game, Timo can step in and bail us out (!)

Thanks Jonathan and good luck to yourself and Stuttgart over the course of the season.

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