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Football: Bayern signs Douglas Costa, Choupo-Moting to add depth

Football: Bayern signs Douglas Costa, Choupo-Moting to add depth

Juventus forward Douglas Costa celebrates after scoring his first goal this season in the Champions League in Moscow. (Photo: AFP/Alexander Nemenov)

MUNICH: Bayern Munich signed forwards Douglas Costa and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting on Monday (Oct 5) as the European champions add extra squad depth to cope with a punishing schedule.

Costa returns to Bayern on a season-long loan from Juventus for his second stint with the club. He gives Bayern coach Hansi Flick more options on the wings in a shortened season with a congested calendar.

“I’m very happy to be playing for FC Bayern again. I had a wonderful time in Munich with lots of successes and I’m sure we’ll win titles again," Costa said on the club website.

The Brazilian played for Bayern from 2015-17, before leaving for Juventus. He scored three goals in 29 games for the Italian club last season, but his opportunities were limited by injuries. He came on as a substitute in both of Juventus' Serie A games so far this season.

Choupo-Moting was available on a free transfer after leaving Paris Saint-Germain and offers backup for Robert Lewandowski in the center.

The 31-year-old Choupo-Moting, who was born in Germany but represents Cameroon internationally, left Paris Saint-Germain when his contract expired at the end of last season. He signed a contract through June 30.

Choupo-Moting scored the winning goal for PSG in stoppage time in the 2-1 victory over Atalanta in the Champions League quarterfinals. His last game for PSG was as a substitute as Bayern beat the French club 1-0 in the final.

“He gives our squad depth in attack, especially in the center, which we will need," Bayern sporting director Hasan Salihamidžić said in a statement.

Bayern had been trying to give young players more game time this season after the departure of Ivan Perisic, who had been on loan from Inter Milan.

Seventeen 17-year-old Jamal Musiala scored in the opening league game against Schalke, but starting 19-year-old Joshua Zirkzee against Hoffenheim last month worked less well in a 4-1 loss.

Bayern also signed 23-year-old defensive midfielder Marc Roca from Espanyol on Sunday.

Also, Tottenham sent defender Ryan Sessegnon on loan to Bundesliga club Hoffenheim after he was left out of manager Jose Mourinho's plans for the 2020-21 season.

Sessegnon signed for Tottenham from Fulham last year but made only 12 appearances, none of them after the coronavirus pandemic interrupted the season. The 20-year-old English player hasn't played this season and was only named in the squad for one Europa League qualifying game.

The signing of Sergio Reguilon at left back made Sessegnon third choice in that position at Tottenham behind the Spaniard and Ben Davies.

Sessegnon is a flexible player who can play left back or in more attacking roles along the left side. Hoffenheim said the deal was a season-long loan and indicated he could replace injured Greek player Konstantinos Stafylidis.

Hoffenheim also agreed a loan deal for former Germany midfielder Sebastian Rudy from Schalke for the season. The 30-year-old Rudy returns for his third stint at the club. He has already made 227 Bundesliga appearances for Hoffenheim, more than any other player.

Schalke said that loaning out Rudy “financially unburdens” the club. Schalke is slashing costs as it tries to make up for years of big spending while the coronavirus pandemic hits revenues.

Hoffenheim is in sixth place in the Bundesliga after winning two of its first three games of the season, including a surprise 4-1 victory over defending champion Bayern Munich on Sep 27.

Source: AP/ec


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