Transfer news

Hamburg targeting Santa Cruz

June 18, 2013
By Stephan Uersfeld, Germany Correspondent

Hamburg are closing in on a deal to sign former Manchester City striker Roque Santa Cruz.

Roque Santa Cruz
EmpicsRoque Santa Cruz is a free agent

Santa Cruz, 31, who spent last season on loan at Malaga, has been released by City and is available on a free transfer.

The Bundesliga club, who have just cashed in on South Korea international Heung-Min Son, have been in talks with the player’s agent, and have reportedly offered the striker a two-year contract.

“I have spoken to his agent,” Hamburg sporting director Oliver Kreuzer told Hamburger Morgenpost. “Nothing has been ruled out, we definitely did not get a rejection. He is a great character, experienced and can join us a on a free. He would do really well for us.”

Speaking to Bild, Santa Cruz’s agent, Jan van Baal, confirmed that he had made preliminary contact with Hamburg.

“There is chance for Hamburg,” Van Baal said. “Roque had a great time in Germany [at Bayern Munich].”

Since signing for Bayern in 1999, the Paraguay international has moved to Blackburn Rovers and Manchester City, where he spent the last two seasons on loan in Spain, at Real Betis and Malaga.

“Over the past few years Roque has often made the switch close to deadline day. This will not be the case this time,” Van Baal said, adding that Santa Cruz, who is currently on holiday in his native Paraguay, would need a further “eight to ten days” to decide on his future.