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St. Pauli sign left-back Lars Ritzka

FC St. Pauli have completed the signing of an additional defender in Lars Ritzka, who moves to the Millerntor on a free transfer. The 23-year-old left-back spent the last two seasons with third-division side SC Verl.

Ritzka held down a regular berth at SC Verl in the season just ended, making 35 appearances in the third division and contributing two goals and four assists. In the previous season, which ended in promotion for Verl, he featured from start to finish in all 23 games in the Regionalliga West and the two play-off matches (1 goal, 7 assists), to which can be added three DFB Cup appearances. Ritzka learned his trade at Hannover 96, rising through the youth ranks from Under-17 level between 2014 and 2019.

Director of sport Andreas Bornemann and new recruit Lars Ritzka

Director of sport Andreas Bornemann and new recruit Lars Ritzka

Reaction to the deal:

Director of sport Andreas Bornemann: "Lars Ritzka was an integral part of the Verl team that won promotion to the third division and then comfortably stayed up. We believe Lars is far from the end of his development and are therefore delighted he's opted to join FC St. Pauli."

Head coach Timo Schultz: "In the last two years Lars has shown he has all the attributes to establish himself in the professional game, which is why we think he is more than capable of making the step up to the second division. In Lars we are getting a player who is consistent in his performances and thus gives us more options and competition in defence."

Lars Ritzka: "I'm overjoyed to have received this offer and be able to take another step in my footballing development. I'm looking forward to the assignment and the future time at FC St. Pauli. I can only promise I'll give my all for the success of the team and the club from day one."


Photos: Witters