Bremen bank on Özil potential

Werder Bremen have finalised their squad for the second half of the season by signing German Under-21 international midfielder Mesut Özil from FC Schalke 04.

Werder Bremen have finalised their squad for the second half of the season by signing German Under-21 international Mesut Özil from FC Schalke 04.

Exciting challenge
The 19-year-old attacking midfielder has agreed a deal keeping him at the Weserstadion until June 2011, and having started just six Bundesliga games for Schalke this term, is eager for a fresh challenge. "Many players who have come here have improved and I see myself having the best possible opportunity to develop," Özil said. "I had good talks with [coach] Thomas Schaaf and Klaus Allofs. Bremen are one of the top clubs in Germany and are always among the top sides in the league. I'm looking forward to it."

'Amazing potential'
Bremen general manager Allofs, whose team face SC Braga in the UEFA Cup Round of 32 having finished third in their UEFA Champions League group, said: "It was a fantastic opportunity to snap up a 19-year-old German youth international who has great pace, technical ability and an amazing amount of potential." Schaaf added: "I'm looking forward to working with him. He offers us the chance to improve our squad in midfield and gives us options." The Braga tie takes place on 13 and 21 February, with Bremen having the option to register Özil for their UEFA Cup campaign.