Transfer news

Hamburg give up on Blues stars

August 13, 2012
By Stephan Uersfeld, Germany Correspondent

Hamburg director of sports Frank Arnesen has said the club has no plans to sign further players from Chelsea.

Frank Arnesen
GettyImagesArnesen faced criticism over the Badelj deal

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Arnesen, who worked at Stamford Bridge from 2005 to 2011, took a number of players from the Blues last year, including Jacopo Sala, Michael Mancienne, Gokhan Tore, Slobodan Rajkovic, but Hamburg endured a hugely disappointing season.

The club had been considering loan bids for Chelsea players Romelu Lukaku and Kevin de Bruyne but ultimately did not make any offers and, speaking to the Hamburger Morgenpost, Arnesen said there would be no further arrivals from the London club.

"I did not want to sign any of their players," he said. "There were one or two candidates, but I believe the media here have not treated the Chelsea boys well. This is not a problem for me, but it is for the players. They are young, and the way they were dealt with was not fair."

Hamburg, the only team to never to have been relegated from Bundesliga, had a disastrous campaign in 2011-12, finishing only one place above the relegation zone.

They have strengthened this summer and last week signed Milan Badelj, 23, from Dinamo Zagreb. However, the Croatia international will not feature until September: the clubs have agreed that the transfer will take place after Dinamo's bid to qualify for the Champions League group stages against NK Maribor.

Hamburg are also expected to sign highly-rated 18-year-old Hakan Calhanoglu from Karlsruher SC in the German third tier.

The €2.5 million-rated midfielder, who was chased by several other Bundesliga clubs, is expected to be loaned back to Karlsruhe for the season.