The German top flight is usually pretty shrewd with it’s signings. Not the nation to particularly throw it’s financial weight around, unless you’re Bayern Munich and the player is currently in the Bundesliga, it’s relatively rare that they have a truly shocking signing in terms of wasted money.
However, as with any league, there are still some examples of some pretty shoddy buys. From players that saw barely 30 minutes to one banned for having a tattoo to another calling his coach a coward in February, there’s no shortage of the strange in the motherland.
So without further murmurings, here are the 10 worst transfers for the Bundesliga in the 2016/17 season:
#10 Mario Gotze – Borussia Dortmund
The strangest homecoming of the summer, Mario Gotze’s move back to the club he started his footballing adventure with came with a mixed reception. Some were happy to see the former prodigy try to rebuild himself, others haven’t forgotten how he left in the first place.
Two goals and two assists in 15 games and the picture doesn't look any rosier than it did back at Bayern Munich. The 24-year-old has been sidelined for the majority of 2017 with ‘metabolic disturbances’ and will face an uphill battle to seemingly ever reclaim the moniker of the ‘German Messi’.
When great lights like this fade so quickly, it can be so heartbreaking. A few wrong decisions, some ill-advised moments and a dramatic lack of confidence, hopefully, the translation of his surname, ‘false god’, isn’t the same title that personifies his career.
#9 Guillermo Varela – Eintracht Frankfurt
Have you ever been suspended for a tattoo? Well, Guillermo Varela has. The Uruguayan got some ink on his arm just before the DFB Pokal final, against the wishes of his manager, only for it to swell up and rule him out of training.
That then led to the club demanding that he return to his parent club and banning him from joining his teammates in Berlin. The Manchester United loanee was used sporadically and did not look particularly impressive when called upon, but he did play a part in the club’s last five games of the season.
Those signs pointed to at least an appearance against Borussia Dortmund in the showpiece event but alas, it wasn’t to be. Note this one down for future sports quizzes, as the 24-year-old will be forever synonymous with this bizarre episode.