Former Liverpool and Bayern Munich midfielder Dietmar Hamann believes Brentford have a potential “world-beater” on their hands in 21-year-old Kevin Schade.
The two-capped Germany international joined The Bees in the 2022/23 January window on loan from SC Freiburg and featured in the second half of the campaign, before completing a permanent deal with the club for £21.4m last month.
Schade made 18 Premier League appearances for Thomas Frank’s men as the club finished ninth in the table last term, though he only managed seven starts as he adapted to the hustle and bustle of top flight English football.
In fact, of the 10 Premier League players who managed seven or more touches in the opposition box per 90 minutes last season (with at least 720 minutes played, the equivalent of eight full matches), only two played for non-Big Six clubs: Kaoru Mitoma (7.66) and Kevin Schade (7.28).
Speaking exclusively to Squawka (on behalf of Lord Ping), Hamann explained why Schade has the potential to be “as good as anyone”.
He said: “I think he could be a world-beater. Coming to England is never easy. I came when I was 24 and it took me a few months to adapt.
“He’s only 21, has played in the U21 Euros for Germany, and I hope he goes with the senior team to the Euros next summer.
“I think once he has settled and feels comfortable [at Brentford], I think he can be as good as anyone. I’d keep an eye on him.”
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Schade broke through the SC Freiburg academy — one responsible for the likes of Nico Schlotterbeck, Matthias Ginter and Christian Gunter in recent years — and was quickly earmarked as one of the club’s most promising and exciting young talents.
His rise to prominence in Baden-Wurttemberg saw clubs like Liverpool strongly associated with his name in 2021, but he committed his future to the Breisgau Brazilians before ultimately signing for Brentford, first temporarily and now permanently.
Frank and Brentford have certainly been busy this summer with the signings of Schade, Nathan Collins from Wolves for a club-record £23m, another Freiburg player in ‘keeper Mark Flekken and promising defender Kim Ji-soo — and they will be hoping to kick on in 2023/24.