Babel joins Galatasaray on a Free

Former Fulham forward Ryan Babel has joined Turkish champions Galatasaray on a Bosman agreement. The 32-year-old was available on a free transfer shortly after the loan stint with Fulham and he has now penned a three-year deal with Galatasaray, where he has the opportunity to ply his trade in the Champions League once more.

Shortly after signing for the club, the Netherlands international expressed his delight over the move and he is hopeful of winning trophies with the reigning league champions, he said: "I think my adventure should continue like this. I am very happy and grateful to be here. I hope I can add extra things to our team. I hope I will win trophies with Galatasaray." This time last year I thought I'd be lucky if I found a promo code of heart bingo, but here I am now in Galatasaray colours - I have to keep pinching myself."

Babel joined the Cottagers on a short-term loan from Besiktas last winter, and he was impressive for them with five goals and three assists from 16 league appearances. Despite this, the west London outfit failed to stay clear of the relegation zone and that meant that they were relegated to the Championship after just one season in the top-flight.

As such, it was always expected that Babel would not prefer to drop down a division and the move to Galatasaray should offer him with the chance to extend his national team career. Elsewhere, the Cottagers have another task at hand to return to the Premier League and part of the focus may remain on keeping hold of the current crop of players.

Out of the current squad, Aleksandar Mitrovic and Ryan Sessegnon have been identified as potential targets for Premier League clubs and the club’s faithful will be hoping that they can sway away interest for both. Mitrovic has been a top recruit for the Cottagers over the past 18 months where he has contributed 23 goals from 59 appearances. Sessegnon, on the other hand, was pivotal to their promotion to the Premier League and keeping him could remain essential to another repeat performance next term.

Babel has enjoyed something of a renaissance in his career, with him hitting the highs as a young professional when he was at Liverpool, but failing to live up to the hype at smaller clubs. It took a stint back in his native Netherlands to get his career back on track, with his impressive performances for the Oranje and Ajax helping to re-focus minds, and remind people that he still has one of the fastest football brains in the game.