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St. Pauli defeated third-division outfit Sportfreunde Lotte 1-0 in a high-intensity run-out on Saturday afternoon. With the game seemingly heading for a 0-0 draw, Lasse Sobiech nodded home a deserved winner from a Christopher Buchtmann corner on 112 minutes.

Sportfreunde Lotte provided the opposition for the second warm-up game as part of the preparations for the 2017/18 season. In a repeat of the 11-0 win over Buxtehuder SV, head coach Olaf Janssen and his staff fielded different sides in each half, a decision that ensured each player had ample playing time to stake a claim for a place in the team when the league campaign kicks off at VfL Bochum on Friday, 28 July (kick-off: 2030 CET).

The game was hardly a festival of football for long periods, but both sides displayed no lack of intensity and desire. Cenk Sahin had the first opening of note with 25 minutes gone, his shot from a Jan-Marc Schneider cross clearing the crossbar. The two teams were not shy to try their luck from distance either, ensuring Robin Himmelmann and his counterpart Yannick Zummack had enough opportunities to show what they can do. The high point of the first period was provided by Under-23 player Seungwon Lee, however, who smashed a rebound following a corner against the woodwork with a first-time volley on 45.

Of the eleven players who started the game, only Himmelmann returned for the second half. Janssen's rejigged side looked to seize the initiative and dictate the proceedings from deep. Up front Maurice Litka forced Lotte custodian Benedikt Fernandez into two smart saves on 75 and 83, while at the other hand Himmelmann pulled out all the stops to hook a shot off the line with his foot on 79.

In the closing stages Janssen's charges had the third-division side pinned back in their own half, but for all their dominance they still lacked punch in the final third. After 93 minutes Richard Neudecker missed the target after Sirlord Conteh had headed the ball on and the same player then hit a left-foot shot narrowly wide on 111. The goal finally arrived a minute after Neudecker's second chance when Christopher Buchtmann delivered a corner into the box for Lasse Sobiech to head home a deserved winner.

Olaf Janssen: "Considering we've only been back in training for two weeks I was positively surprised by the team today. The lads played with intensity and desire, and some of them laid down big markers. Lotte provided a tough test in a fiery encounter and pressed us early. I'm pleased with the performance, even though we should have won by a greater margin in the end."


FC St. Pauli

1st half:

Himmelmann – Kalla, Avevor, Schoppenhauer, Buballa – Sahin, Lee, Choi, Sobota – Allagui, Schneider


2nd half:

Himmelmann (Brodersen 91') – Zander, Sobiech, Koglin, Park – Litka, Flum, Buchtmann, Neudecker – Conteh (Kessner 105'), Bouhaddouz (Møller Dæhli 91')


Head coach: Olaf Janssen


Sportfreunde Lotte

1st half:

Zummack, Acquistapace, Putze, Heyer, Dej, Wendel, Langlitz, Hober, Neidhart, Al Ghaddioui, Lindner


2nd half:

Fernandez, Isitan, Brock, Dej, Rosinger, Oesterhelweg, Freiberger, Hohnstedt, Kalinowski, Adetula, Siekman

Head coach: Ismail Atalan


Goals: 1-0 Sobiech (112')


Photo: Witters

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