Würzburger Kickers have made the double signing of Darmstadt's Costa Rican international, Júnior Díaz, and 1860 Munich's Albanian attacker Valdet Rama. The latter has been handed a two year deal by Bernd Hollerbach's side, whilst the former, Díaz, will have a one year rolling contract.
The pair have both arrived at the Flyeralarm arena under free transfers from their respective former clubs.
Both Díaz and Rama add to the raft of players that die Rothosen have brought in, as they look to strengthen for their first season in the 2. Bundesliga for 38 long years. Others such as David Pisot and Marco Königs have already arrived, and the duo become the respected 11th and 12th names to come to this part of North West Franconia this summer.
Experience at this level
Experience is one thing promoted sides often look for, and Valdet Rama is in no short measure of that after spending the majority of his career in the 2. Bundesliga. The Albanian international has previously represented FC Ingolstadt 04 at this level, and has been with 1860 Munich since 2014.
He has made some 74 appearances in the league. Hollerbach has good knowledge of the player too, having spent time with him at VfL Wolfsburg II, and mentioned it as a reason for signing him - "I know him from our time together at Wolfsburg, and I am aware of his skills and the various positions he can play," said the Kickers head coach.
Although not a German national, Rama grew up in the country and came through the ranks of the Rot-Weiß Essen academy before making the move to Lower Saxony. He found playing time difficult, so made the switch to Ingolstadt before a further spell with Hannover 96. In 2011 he left the country, signing with Swedish Allsvenskan side, Örebro SK, then spending time with Real Valladolid prior to his move to the Bavarian capital.
"He is a brave footballer, who brings a lot of pace and is great in one on one positions" said Hollerbach on his new signing. Evidently pleased with being able to add to his side even further, the 46 year old also said, "Valdet will strengthen us in attacking positions and help to ensure we are better prepared [for the season]."
Dropping down a division
Only two years ago, Júnior Díaz, was helping Costa Rica get to the Quarter Finals of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, now he makes the step down to the 2. Bundesliga following a poor season with SV Darmstadt 98. The 32 year old made the switch to Hessen from 1. FSV Mainz 05 after three years with the club, but was restricted to only 14 appearances in all competitions with die Lillien.
Appearing for his national side on 81 occasions, Díaz began his career in Europe with Polish side, Wisla Krakow. After spending a year on loan with Club Brugge, he made the move to the Rhineland-Palatinate in 2012 and quickly established himself in die Nullfünfer's starting eleven making 63 appaearancves for Mainz.
Just like Rama, the 32 year old will provide die Rothosen with tonnes of experience and this was clearly an attribute Bernd Hollerbach was looking for. "His vast experience will especially help our younger players," said the Würzburg manager.
Again like Rama, he can also play in a number of positions and Hollerbach was also keen to point this out, "Júnior is very versatile in defence but not only can he play in a back four, he can play in midfield. This makes us more versatile and not only that, he improves our team in character."