Nigeria defender Leon Balogun has joined Mainz 05 from promoted SV Darmstadt 98, German media reported on Friday.
The 26-year-old Super Eagles star joined on a free transfer and signed a three-year contract with the Bundesliga side on Friday.
The Berlin-born German-Nigerian made 21 appearances and scored four goals last season to help Darmstadt gain promotion.
Balogun is excited about the move, praising Mainz’s Bundesliga pedigree.
“I look forward to the task ahead. Mainz 05 has established itself in recent years in the Bundesliga. That’s what I want here also. This is a very good opportunity for me. I am very happy and proud to be a Mainz 05 player.”
Balogun previously played for Hannover 96 (2008 – 2010), Werder Bremen (2010-12) and Fortuna Dusseldorf (2012-14).
Mainz team manager Christian Heidel is happy to have the Nigerian at the club.
“We wanted Balogun during his time at Fortuna Dusseldorf, but then an injury derailed our plans,” Heidel said. “With the season he has now played in Darmstadt 98 we see he’s ready. He’s a physically strong, dynamic right-back, who can also play centre-back. We look forward to a highly motivated and ambitious player who would like to compete in the Bundesliga.”
Coach Martin Schmidt added: “In Leon Balogun we have a very strong, aggressive full-back, who is also flexible on the defensive. He is a likeable, intelligent guy who will enrich our team not only on the pitch but also in the dressing room.”