Nicknamed 'the Ginger Ramos' - who is Sheffield Wednesday-linked David Bates?
Scottish international defender David Bates has emerged as a late transfer target for Sheffield Wednesday as the 5pm deadline draws ever-closer.
What’s the story of his playing career?
The 22-year-old – dubbed ‘the Ginger Ramos’ by fans during his time at Rangers – currently plays at German second tier outfit Hamburg having achieved a meteoric rise from playing in front of crowds of a few hundred at Brechin City and East Stirlingshire.
Having come through at Raith Rovers, Bates played at those clubs on loan as recently as 2015 before getting his big break, a ‘development loan’ to the Glasgow giants themselves for the 2016/17 season.
Bates impressed and signed at the season’s end, making his Rangers debut in a Scottish Premiership match against Kilmarnock in April 2017.
A 22-match season followed and with Bates’ Rangers contract set to end, he began attracting interest from a host of clubs in the UK and abroad including, reportedly, Arsenal. He signed for Hamburg in 2018 and has become a key man at the heart of their defence.
Bates has four caps for Scotland having made his debut in a 4-0 win over Albania in November.
What’s his playing style?
Standing at 6ft4, Bates is an imposing figure and is naturally good in the air. Deceptively quick and capable with the ball at his feet, the Scot has experience of playing in either a back four or a back three.
Sign up to our Sheffield Wednesday newsletter
The i newsletter cut through the noise
He is known to read the game nicely and rarely picks up yellow cards, but in terms of weaknesses, Bates has been known for the occasional lapse in concentration.
Why are Wednesday interested?
It’s taken many by surprise. Wednesday have made no secret of their desire to strengthen at the back, despite the transfer of Julian Borner this summer, and have long since been in negotiations to bring Chelsea’s Michael Hector back to the club after a stellar 2018/19 season.
But Chelsea have stood firm on their £5m price tag, prompting Wednesday to look elsewhere for now.
Why ‘the Ginger Ramos’?
Why not? While Bates’ playing style is not all that similar to that of the Real Madrid legend, it’s all a bit of fun, started by ‘Gers fans on social media.
Asked about the moniker when he signed for Hamburg, Bates said: “It was when I was at Rangers. It must have been something on Twitter and a few of the boys picked it up and it’s stuck.
“I just take it as a joke. A lot of the boys used to laugh about it and had a good joke about it. But nah, Ramos is a great player. Everyone knows that.”