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The first day of pre-season training was also the first official day at work for Marvin Knoll, so it was only natural for the new recruit to take questions from the Hamburg media as soon as the opening session was over. The defender spoke about his move to the Millerntor, himself and his new team.

"St. Pauli were my first choice," said Marvin Knoll at his debut press conference after the opening training session of the 2018/19 season. "I discussed several offers with my family, but in the end the matter was clear-cut." For the central defender and his loved ones, that meant a move from Regensburg to Hamburg during the close season. There is no doubt in the 27-year-old's mind about the correctness of his decision to team up with the Boys in Brown; it drips from every word he says. "St. Pauli are a terrific club and I can't wait to run out with the team at the Millerntor," he enthused.

The Berlin native spoke just as enthusiastically about his first few days at his new club: "The players have made me feel very welcome and I really enjoyed the first training session. It was fierce. I feel really up for it." There was one thing the new No5 wanted to make clear from the start, however: "I'm a different type of player than Lasse Sobiech. I want to show that I'm Marvin Knoll."

What type of player can his teammates and the supporters look forward to, then? "I'm a communicator who always wants to help his team," he said. "I try to carry my teammates with me, especially with my emotionality. That's why fans go to games, after all. In my eyes there's nothing better than going off the pitch with your teammates after a hard-fought win," he continued, revealing that he was simply made to play at the Millerntor.

Knoll, a member of the team that won the World Schools Football Championship in 2007 and someone who loves nothing more than a kick-about with his mates, says the Boys in Brown are perfectly placed for next season. "Obviously the threat of relegation was a worry right to the end last season, but there's a lot of quality in the squad and the players have morale and desire! I'm very confident. For us, it's all about coming together now and having a consistent season."


Photo: FC St. Pauli