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FOOTBALL

Arsenal loan Swiss footballer to Hamburg

Arsenal's Swiss defender Johan Djourou is set to join Bundesliga football side Hamburg for a year on loan with a option to buy, the north German side's director of sport Oliver Kreuzer says.

Arsenal loan Swiss footballer to Hamburg
Johan Djourou: in demand in Germany. Photo: Reto Stauffer

Djourou, 26, impressed earlier this year during a six-month loan spell at Hanover 96, making 14 Bundesliga appearances, and Hamburg look to have won the race with their German league rivals to secure his services.
   
"I am sure it will happen," Kreuzer told Hamburg's Morgenpost newspaper, with football magazine Kicker reporting Djourou has already signed a contract.

Hanover appear to have lost out on Djourou simply because of finances.

"We can not, and do not want to, do some irrational economic things," Hanover's director of sport Dirk Dufner told German daily Bild.

"We pushed our limits," Dufner said.

"Hamburg could do things which we simply couldn't."

Djourou has been at Arsenal since 2004, making 86 appearances for the Gunners and is under contract until 2015, having won 40 caps for Switzerland.

After Cameroon striker Jacques Zoua, who has signed from Basel, Djourou would be the club's second new addition in the off season.

Manchester City's Uruguay striker Roque Santa Cruz, 31, and defender Lasse Sobiech, 22, from Champions League finalists Borussia Dortmund are also Hamburg targets before pre-season training starts on Monday.

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FOOTBALL

‘Overwhelmed’: Unaware Swiss super fan stunned about viral fame

A Swiss super fan who has shot to fame after images of him watching Switzerland’s win over France went viral told the media he was unaware of his viral fame - but that he was overwhelmed with the world’s attention.

‘Overwhelmed’: Unaware Swiss super fan stunned about viral fame
Image: Twitter.

Like most Swiss football fans, Luca Loutenbach’s Monday evening – highlighted by a surprise upset win over the current World Champions and tournament favourite France – went about as well as you could have expected. 

But while his side were putting on the pressure through late goals to push the game into extra time, Loutenbach’s image was being shared across the world. 

Two pictures of Loutenbach, juxtaposed from before and after Switzerland scored an equaliser in the 90th minute to send the game to extra time, were widely shared. 

The images were even shared by Sadiq Kahn, the mayor of London, who congratulated Switzerland and said the images summed up the beauty of football. 

On Tuesday, Loutenbach spoke with Swiss tabloid Blick to tell the story. He said he had no idea about the images as his phone had no reception in Romania – and only found out after the game. 

“I didn’t have a network during the game. But some fans around me were connected to the internet and quickly realized what was happening. What an incredible buzz!” said the man from the canton of Jura. 

While Switzerland have made it further than they have in their history in the tournament, Loutenbach is far from a bandwagon fan. He told Blick he’s seen around 50 national team games before. 

“It’s the most beautiful day in the history of Swiss football, let’s not be afraid of saying it. It is the accomplishment of the immense work of the ASF (Federation), of (coach) Petkovic and of the whole team” he said. 

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