Frankfurt sign ex-Germany keeper Hildebrand | Sports| German football and major international sports news | DW | 25.09.2014
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Frankfurt sign ex-Germany keeper Hildebrand

After an injury to first-choice goalkeeper Kevin Trapp, Eintracht Frankfurt have signed former Germany goalkeeper Timo Hildebrand. The 35-year-old football journeyman had previously been without a club.

Eintracht Frankfurt have signed former Germany goalkeeper Timo Hildebrand in the wake of a major injury to their first-choice keeper Kevin Trapp, the Bundesliga club revealed on Thursday.

"Timo is an ideal solution for us," said Frankfurt's sporting director Bruno Hübner. "We trust Felix fully and Timo knows the substitute situation from his time at Schalke," added Hübner.

"We spoke on Wednesday afternoon and by the evening everything was agreed. Then I put the kids to bed, packed my bags and set off," said the goalkeeper, who lives with his family in Stuttgart.

Hildebrand, a free agent, started training in Frankfurt on Thursday. The 35-year-old was released by Schalke at the end of last season. Hildebrant, who won the Bundesliga title with VfB Stuttgart in 2007, has seven Germany caps to his name.

"I have trained over the past weeks in Karlsruhe and feel fit. Eintracht is a club with a special charisma and I am looking forward to the task, and to working with coach Thomas Schaaf and the team," Hildebrand said in a statement distributed by his management.

Frankfurt's first-choice goalkeeper Trapp damaged an ankle ligament in Tuesday's 2-2 draw with Mainz and is expected to now be out for up to three months. Frankfurt visit bottom side Hamburg on Sunday.

Timo Hildebrand looks dejected after conceding a goal (Photo: Friso Gentsch/dpa)

Hildebrand was last employed by Schalke, and played in the Champions League

Hildebrand has signed to be a number-two goalkeeper, a role he most recently had at Frankfurt's rivals Schalke. Frankfurt's new number one goalkeeper will be 24-year-old Felix Wiedwald.

"There won't be any drama. The arrangement is clear," said the goalkeeper during his press conference on Thursday. "I can totally identify with this role," said Hildebrand before adding, "Felix has a great chance to prove himself over an extended period of time. I am happy to offer him my help."

Aside from Stuttgart, Hildebrand also spent time abroad at Valencia and Sporting Lisbon, as well as at Bundesliga clubs Schalke and Hoffenheim. Since the summer though, Hildebrand has been without a club.

"I didn't let the fact that I had no club drive me round the bend. The same thing happened three years ago," said Hildebrand. "I never thought about retiring. I still have fun playing football and I don't have any plans to quit after this season either."

jh/al (dpa, SID)