Hamburg manager Christian Titz believes Rangers defender David Bates can help the struggling German giants bounce back into the Bundesliga at the first attempt when he completes his move from the Light Blues this summer.
Bates surprised everyone when it was announced he was headed for HSV when his Ibrox contract expires and his new manager insisted they have “high hopes for the 21-year-old.”
Bates made his final Gers appearance in the 5-5 draw with Hibernian at Easter Road on Sunday and Titz believes that the former Raith Rovers star is an “exciting talent” who can help them back to the top tier in Germany after being relegated from the Bundesliga for the first time.
“We have already made some additions to the team for next season. One of them is a young Scottish defender and we have high hopes for David Bates,” Titz said, as quoted by the Daily Record.
“When you add exciting talent like him and a few others and mix them with the main body of the squad we already have signed up, then there is plenty of reason to be optimistic we can challenge for a return to the Bundesliga.”
Football Insider verdict
Bates has a much better chance of success now Hamburg have been relegated and it should give him a bit more space to find his feet in a new country with a new club. The 21-year-old’s departure from Ibrox disappointed many fans but the Light Blues need to improve the side and have an abundance of defenders already – before Steven Gerrard even gets to work bringing in reinforcements. With an opportunity at a massive club, Bates will learn a huge amount while in Germany and despite his technical limitations as a footballer, the Kirkcaldy-born star does have good positioning and plays a strong, physical game which should mean he isn’t bullied by attackers. With Bates and Russell Martin definitely on the way out – and others who could possibly follow – Gerrard and director of football Mark Allen need to get some new faces into the squad as the first competitive game of the season looms a little over eight weeks away.