Deni Alar: Welcome Back to Hütteldorf!
Incredible breaking transfer in Hütteldorf: after two years, Austrian international Deni Alar has returned to the Rapid fold with immediate effect! The 28-year old Styrian, who between 2011-2016 made 139 competitive appearances in Green & White (43 goals), has signed a contract until summer 2022. The club has taken advantage of a release clause in Alar's contract to sign him on favourable financial terms.
During his first spell at the club, Alar was a firm fans favourite. After a string of outstanding performances in Rapid's successful early European campaign which saw the Hütteldorfers qualify for the Europa League group stage, Alar went on to deliver glittering performances throughout the season, culminating in him being voted fans player of the season. Some tough knocks followed though, as he suffered two serious injuries - to his Achilles tendon in May 2013 and his foot in April 2014 - which halted his progress with the club and side lined him for the best part of a year. A move to Sturm Graz followed, where Deni regained full fitness and hit top form. For the past two seasons Alar has been second in the Bundesliga golden boot race, scoring 41 times in just 82 appearances for Sturm.
In the wake of injuries to Giorgi Kvilitaia, Andrija Pavlovic and Philipp Schobesberger, Fredy Bickel had already made public his intention to again dip into the market to recruit attacking reinforcements. On the arrival of Deni Alar, Rapid's sporting Director explained: "I'm extremely happy that Deni Alar is returning to SK Rapid. He’s a special attacker, a great finisher and a quality all-round footballer. He doesn’t only know the league, but also our club and will therefore have no problems quickly integrating into the squad. I hope that he’ll quickly pick up the form he has displayed over the past couple of seasons."
Head Coach Goran Djuricin was relieved that the club has acted so quickly to bring in a new forward, and one who has already arrived at the training camp in Windischgarten: "I'm delighted that the best Austrian attacker in our league will soon be lining up for us. He wasn't called up to the national team for no reason, and will without a doubt take the quality of our attack up a notch."
On his return to Hütteldorf, man of the moment Deni Alar had the following to say: "Just a few days ago I’d never of thought that the opportunity to return to Rapid might present itself, otherwise I’d have offered different answers in some recent interviews. As is widely known, two years ago I wanted to prove that I still belonged in the Green & White squad, but at the time unfortunately my contract wasn't renewed. It became clear that it was better for me to try my hand at a different club. I want to thank SK Sturm Graz for two fantastic years. The club offered me the chance to prove myself and I’m very proud what my team mates and I achieved in Styria where I of course come from. I’m aware that lots of Sturm fans have been surprised by my decision and aren't best pleased, but I want to prove beyond any doubt that it was the wrong decision to release me two years ago, and I also want to win the title in Green & White as soon as possible", explained Alar, who in his professional career has netted an impressive 111 goals in 333 competitive appearances spread across the Bundesliga, Europa League & ÖFB Cup.
We extend a warm welcome back to Deni Alar!