Two Portuguese strikers completed moves on Monday evening as Seleção international Gonçalo Paciência left Eintracht Frankfurt for fellow Bundesliga club Schalke, while Tomané signed for ambitious Turkish second-tier outfit Samsunspor from Red Star Belgrade.
Paciência, 26, joins Schalke on an initial loan deal for a reported fee of €1.5m with an option to make the deal permanent for €11m at the end of the season. Tomané, meanwhile, has signed a three-year contract at Samsunspor after a little over a year in Belgrade, during which time he won the Serbian league championship last season.
Schalke unveiled Paciência on Monday afternoon, with sporting director Jochen Schneider telling the press: “We are very happy that we were able to make the singing of Gonçalo Paciência. It is the combination of physicality and technique that characterises his game.”
For his part, the former Porto striker said: “I can't wait to finally get started on the pitch. The conversations with Jochen Schneider and David Wagner were great, both totally convinced me about Schalke.”
Paciência scored ten goals in 34 appearances during his two years with Frankfurt, much of which was disrupted by injury. The form of compatriot André Silva and strike-partner Bas Dost, both of whom arrived after Paciência, led to concerns about game time and the move to Schalke will allow for a consistent run of football.
Tomané makes Turkey switch
Tomané’s move from Red Star to Samsunspor sees him sacrifice Champions League football to assist in an ambitious project on the north coast of Turkey. The former Tondela striker was paraded in front of the media on Monday evening having signed a contract for three years with the option of a further year.
Samsunspor were promoted from the third tier last season, having recovered from financial and administrative issues under the guidance of wealthy president Yüksel Yıldırım. Tomané’s arrival is an indication of the ambitions of the club under Yıldırım, with the president declaring that Samsunspor expect to play Europa League football in the top flight in the near future.
Tomané won the Serbian Super Liga last year and had been playing a key role in the early rounds of the Champions League playoffs, but Samsunspor were able to tempt Red Star into selling despite the club preferring to hold onto the striker for this week’s clash with Omonia Nicosia in Cyprus.
Samsunspor, who have been playing under the guidance of highly-respected manager Ertuğrul Sağlam since last summer, began their promotion-chasing campaign in the second tier with a goalless draw at Altay on Sunday. With Sağlam at the helm and their high-profile new recruit Tomané in attack, much will be expected of the team nicknamed “The Red Lightning” this season.
By Sean Gillen