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Leagues: Champions League

Stuttgart to move for another striker

Newly-crowned Bundesliga champions VfB Stuttgart are looking to strengthen their forward line ahead of the coming season. They’ve allowed Jon Dahl Tomasson to make his loan from Stuttgart to Villarreal a permanent deal after the two clubs reached an agreement on a fee. Stuttgart’s Swiss striker, Marco Streller, looks set for a move to Nurnberg, while forwards Benjamin Lauth and Daniel Ljubola don’t appear to have a future at the club. This will leave them reliant on just two players in attack, Mario Gomez and Cacau, unless some new faces are brought in soon.

With that in mind, rumours are hotting up that Stuttgart will move for a pair of Ligue Une strikers. Both St. Etienne striker Bafetimbi Gomis and Lille’s Peter Odemwingie have been talked up as transfer targets for the club. Odemwingie saw his form dip last season and he scored just five times in 29 appearances after netting 14 goals in the 2005-06 season. The thinking is that Stuttgart may try to land the player in a cut-price deal and then hope that he regains his goal-scoring form. Odemwingie first rose to prominence during Nigeria’s 2004 African Cup of Nations campaign, scoring 3 goals in 5 appearances.

Bafetimbi Gomis, reported to be available for a fee of 3.5 -5 million Euros, scored 10 goals for St. Etienne last season. The other name being mentioned is 20-year-old Hungarian striker Tamás Priskin, currently with English Championship club Watford.

It’s been an intersting off-season for Stuttgart so far. They have lost their number one keeper, Timo Hildebrand, to Spanish club Valencia but have signed playmaker Yildary Basturk from Hertha Berlin, keeper Raphael Schäfer from Nurnberg and Brazilian centre-back Gledson from Hansa Rostock. The loss of Hildrebrand is huge as he was a steady figure in goal for Stuttgart for seasons, which includes setting a Bundesliga record of 884 minutes without conceding a goal in 2003-04.

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