I watch a lot of Hamburg (was at 6 of their home games last season) and I’m working with lots of Hamburg fans currently.
The fans seem to rate him tbh and think he should be starting every week.
He had a rough couple of games to start the season but then grew into it and formed a good partnership with Van Drongelen. If was their defensive solidity that got Hamburg to top of the Bundesliga 2 towards the end of February/start of March, due to their complete inability to score goals on a regular basis.
The end of the season was a total disaster for Hamburg though and it resulted in Bates being dropped after he had a poor game v Magdeburg in a back 3 and caused one of the goals in a 2-1 defeat.
He’ll start as first choice next season now Hamburg have a competent manager IMO.
Bates would have been excellent for us in the current system as we actually provide some protection for the centre halves. He’d easily be pushing for a first team place.
We could've kept McGregor and Danny Wilson as our first choice centre backs, with Craig Halkett and Dom Ball as backups. Probably would've won the Scottish Cup and had a bigger budget due to the possibility of Europe going into the next season too if that had happened.
Anyway, the love-in with Bates is bizarre. A solid enough defender who looked better than he was due to the players he was competing with. He wouldn't have gotten a game ahead of Katic, Goldson or Worrall if we're being honest, and isn't good enough to be in a league winning squad. He's marginally better than the likes of Jack Hendry.
But when playing for us McGregor wasn't good, couldn't even hardly win many tackles or headers, joined His side and looks a totally Different player fy far, imo ?
Bates though, nah, not good enough for us, and neither is the likes of young Middleton either. (imo)