With all the big name transfers this summer in the Bundesliga the free transfer of midfielder Grischa Prömel from Union Berlin to Hoffenheim largely went under the radar. Likewise, with all the fantastic stand-out performances this season from the likes of Jamal Musiala, Sheraldo Becker and Randal Kolo Muani, the consistently effective performances of Prömel have also gone somewhat under the radar.
Not at Hoffenheim they haven’t as the Sinsheim club have quickly realised what a quality player they have and what an important role is already playing for Andre Breitenreiter’s side. It is so often the case that the goalscoring strikers and the chance-creating playmakers grab the headlines, while the undervalued midfield workhorses go unnoticed.
The early statistics from the opening six weeks of the season do not lie and they show what a top performer Prömel has been for TSG as he leads the League in a number of metrics. In terms of pure distance covered on the pitch the 27-year-old ranks second behind Ellyes Shkiri with 71.7km covered. In terms of direct duels won he is level with Dortmund’s Jude Bellingham with 60% won (behind only Elvis Rexhbecaj and Charles Aranguiz).
His work-rate compliments the creativity of Christoph Baumgartner and Dennis Geiger, and this effective midfield mix has been a major factor in Hoffenheim mixing it at the top of the table with Union, Bayern, Freiburg, and Dortmund. Prömel added a goal last week against Mainz. He provided an assist against Bayer Leverkusen on matchday 3 and was singled out for individual praise by the coach afterwards.
“He has taken on the role of a leading player right from the start. He’s very hard-working, dangerous, and just a good guy. Every coach wants such a player.”
Prömel started his career with Hoffenheim U-19’s before making 24 appearances for Hoffenheim II. He moved onto Karlsruher SC and then Union Berlin, where he really developed his midfield discipline. Now back in Sinsheim he is quickly becoming Mr. Indispensable, even if amongst the larger viewing public, he is still Mr. Underrated.