René Adler sets sail for the calmer waters of Mainz
René Adler, left, with Rouven Schröder. | Photo: 1. FSV Mainz 05

René Adler has found a new club after leaving Hamburger SV, as 1. FSV Mainz 05 sign him up as their new goalkeeper, their first transfer of the summer.

The former Germany international has signed a two-year deal with die Nullfünfer after joining on a free transfer, and should provide a steadier pair of hands in goal after Jonas Lössl struggled in his first season with the club.

Over 250 Bundesliga appearances for Leverkusen and Hamburg

Adler initially made his name at Bayer Leverkusen, spending 12 years at the BayArena, making 138 Bundesliga appearances after making his debut for the first team in 2007.

After finding himself usurped by Bernd Leno during an injury-hit 2011-12 season, he moved on to Hamburg where he clocked up another 117 appearances in the league for a club that have struggled at the wrong end of the table in that time, with his 28 clean sheets well short of the 55 he kept at Leverkusen.

The 32-year-old also has 13 caps for Germany, but his international career was hampered by injury ahead of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, plus the emergence of Manuel Neuer and a whole wave of talented German keepers. His last appearance came a friendly against Ecuador in 2013.

Adler looking forward to a calmer atmosphere

Adler announced at the end of the season just gone that he would not be renewing his contract with der Dino. And given the chaotic way of life at HSV, it is perhaps no surprise he says that “the calm but focused atmosphere” at Mainz convinced him to move there. He also called the transfer “the right step at the right time for me.”

Rouven Schröder, Mainz’s sporting director, had high praise for the keeper, describing him as “one of the most iconic personalities in the Bundesliga” and “one of the strongest goalkeepers in Germany.” He added that the club’s talks with Adler showed him to be “a highly self-conscious and motivated professional.”

They will be hoping that he provides a more trust-worthy custodian of their goal, as Lössl struggled as replacement to Loris Karius last season, eventually losing his place to Jannik Huth as Mainz conceded 55 goals in the Bundesliga, the joint second-highest tally in their top-flight history, finished above the bottom three on goal difference alone.

Quotes via 1. FSV Mainz 05.