Leverkusen tie down Toprak on long-term contract

Defender Ömer Toprak heralded Bayer 04 Leverkusen as a "strong side that can fulfil their ambitions" after penning a new long-term deal with the round of 16 participants.

Ömer Toprak celebrates his goal on matchday six
Ömer Toprak celebrates his goal on matchday six ©AFP/Getty Images

Bayer 04 Leverkusen defender Ömer Toprak has put pen to paper on a new long-term contract, tying him to the Bundesliga outfit until summer 2018.

The agreement marks a two-year extension for the German-born Turkish international centre-back, who joined Leverkusen from SC Freiburg in 2011 and has gone on to make 67 league appearances, scoring once.

"I am delighted to have signed this deal. We have a strong side who can achieve their ambitions – that's why signing the contract was such an easy decision," enthused the 24-year-old, whose winning goal at Real Sociedad de Futbol in December ensured his team qualified from UEFA Champions League Group A.

Leverkusen sporting director Rudi Völler added: "Ömer made huge strides last season. He is now taking greater responsibility on the pitch and has became dangerous in front of goal. We see him as one of the cornerstones of our team. He will get even better over the next few years – that's why it was so important to get the deal done."

Second in the Bundesliga, Sami Hyypiä's men face a daunting task in the UEFA Champions League round of 16 when they host French title holders Paris Saint-Germain on 18 Febuary, with the return leg three weeks later.