France World Cup winger FRANCK RIBERTY (left) of defending Bundesliga champion Bayern Munich attempts to fend off the challenge of TSG 1899 Hoffenheim midfielder GUSTAVO during this season’s late September league match in the German top flight at the Rhein Neckar Arena in Sinsheim, Baden-Wuerttemberg. (Michael Probst/AP)
The defending League and Cup champions in Germany, BAYERN MUNICH, have announced a major acquisition during the annual Winterpause as the versatile Brazilian LUIZ GUSTAVO DIAS has been signed from Bundesliga club TSG 1899 HOFFENHEIM in exchange for the considerable transfer fee of 15.0 million Euros.
The 23-year-old, commonly known as just Gustavo, has never been capped by Brazil at any level but has been with TSG 1899 Hoffenheim in Germany the past three and one half seasons.
Gustavo joined the southwestern Baden-Wuerttemberg side in 2007 from Brazilian outfit Sport Club Corinthians Alagoano, a modest provincal team who play in the tiny Estadio Nelson Peixoto Feijo (capacity 10,000) and should not be confused with far better-known Sport Club Corinthians Paulista based in big-city Sao Paulo, initially on loan.
After Gustavo played in 27 league matches and helped the TSG 1899 Hoffenheim team earn promotion form the 2.Bundesliga, the southwestern German club decided to excerise its option to purchase the Brazilian in the summer of 2008; since then, Gustavo has contested 72 Bundesliga games and scored two goals for the Sinsheim-based side.
Gustavo began football life as a left back but spent most of his time with TSG 1899 Hoffenheim as a defensive midfielder. On the surface, it would appear that Gustavo is a natural, younger replacement for 33-year-old Holland World Cup defensive midfielder MARK VAN BOMMEL. The veteran Dutchman, for his part, expressed pleasure that Bayern Munich management have signed as player as competent as Gustavo, who is capable of deployment in central defense, as well.
Included as part of the Gustavo transaction, TSG 1899 Hoffenheim will receive Bayern Munich’s 18-year-old talented Austria international winger DAVID ALABA on loan for the rest of the 2010-11 season.