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Dutch forward Ryan Babel spent three-and-a-half years at Liverpool before he signed for German club TSG Hoffenheim during the 2011 winter transfer window. Babel officially signed for Hoffenheim on January 25, 2011 in a deal reported to be around £8m. The Dutchman had put pen to paper on a two-and-a-half year deal until the end of the 2012/13 season.

Ryan Babel played his first game for TSG Hoffenheim in the quarterfinals of the German Cup in 2011 against Energie Cottbus. The Dutchman is renowned for his celebration which involves sticking out his left little finger in support of the underprivileged youths in the Dutch city of Amsterdam.

Babel scored his first goal for TSG Hoffenheim a little over two months after joining the club during the 3-2 loss to Freiburg in the league. In his first full season at Hoffenheim, Ryan Babel scoredhis first game during the 2-0 league win at Augsburg on August 20, 2013. Three weeks later, he scored his first pair of goals in a 4-0 win over Mainz 05 in the league. Babel was responsible for two of the goals against Mainz 05 in a German Bundesliga clash played on September 10, 2011. In the next league game after Mainz, Ryan Babel scored again to lead his team to a 3-1 victory over VFL Wolfsburg on September 17, 2011.

Ryan Babel scored six goals in 51 games for TSG Hoffenheim in all competitions during his 18-month stay at the club. Babel had a year left on his contract with the German Bundesliga outfit by the time he was released on August 31, 2012. The Dutch international bought the final year of his TSG Hoffenheim contract for him to return to boyhood club Ajax Amsterdam on a one-year deal. His career as a professional footballer started at Ajax.