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Football | Germany

Sakai, Roecker renew Stuttgart contracts



VfB Stuttgart extended deals with 21-year-old Japan international Gotoku Sakai and German Benedikt Roecker to 2016 and 2015 respectively on Thursday, days after agreeing new contracts with their fellow defender Georg Niedermeier and two other players.

Europa League competitors Stuttgart went into the Bundesliga winter break in ninth place after three wins in the last four games to stay in contention for another European spot next season.

"We are very happy that we managed to sign Gotoku Sakai about a year ago," said Stuttgart sports director Fredi Bobic. "We knew he had enormous potential in his position. He has developed in a great way since."

The two new deals follow contract extensions for Niedermeier as well as midfielders Tamas Hajnal and Christian Gentner this week.

The Bundesliga resumes next week after a one-month break.

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