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Bundesliga News

Official: Sardar Azmoun headed to Leverkusen on a free

By Peter Vice

The attacker dubbed the "Iranian Lionel Messi" will suit up for Germany's red company team next year. 

On Saturday afternoon, Bayer 04 Leverkusen confirmed one of the most valuable free transfers in footballing history. 

Sardar Azmoun.
Sardar Azmoun.Photo: Кирилл Венедиктов, Soccer.ru, CC BY-SA 3.0

After a move last autumn fell through, Iranian attacker Sardar Azmoun evidently found himself sufficiently impressed with the look of the current Leverkusen squad; enough so to commit to a move to the Bundesliga this summer. Germany's red company team confirmed on Saturday that the 27-year-old will arrive after the season on a free.

The prolific striker heads west after a career in the Russian Premiership that spanned 12 seasons. After playing for Rubin Kazan and FC Rostov, the 27-year-old truly began to realize his potential following a move to Zenit St. Petersburg in 2019. Since joining the capital city side, he's scored 62 goals across all competitions in four years. He's also garnered 23 assists during that span.

In a released statement, Azmoun declared himself impressed with Leverkusen's "really great squad." The scorer of 39 tallies for country also expressed his excitement at joining "one of the best leagues in Europe."

Azmoun has won three consecutive titles with Zenit and always been at or near the top of the Russian scoring table. Valued at €25 million in the latest transfermarkt listings, the Iranian is one of the most expensive players in footballing history to depart his club on a free.

In reporting on the deal, the transfermarkt data crew claims that only 13 footballers of higher value have ever made such a move.

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