DEU, DFL, 1. FBL Hertha BSC, Training, / 01.08.2022, Sportforum, Berlin, DEU, DFL, 1. FBL Hertha BSC, Training, im Bild Marco Richter Hertha BSC Berlin 23, DFL - regulations prohibit any use of Photographs as image sequences and/or quasi-video *** DEU, DFL, 1 FBL Hertha BSC, Training, 01 08 2022, Sportforum, Berlin, DEU, DFL, 1 FBL Hertha BSC, Training, in picture Marco Richter Hertha BSC Berlin 23 , DFL regulations prohibit any use of Photographs as image sequences and or quasi video nordphotoxGmbHx/xEngler nph00076

Marco Richter, 24, was diagnosed with testicular cancer three weeks ago. In the meantime, the professional soccer player has had a successful operation from Hertha BSC. Richter announced on his Instagram account about ten days ago: “The tumor was malignant, but it was successfully removed and I don’t need chemotherapy and can soon attack again.”

On Monday he completed an individual session on the training ground for the first time. Before the training, he answered questions from the media. Here are his most important statements, recorded by Stefan Hermanns.

Great now. I’m really happy and happy to be back here and I’ve been very well received by the team. Of course it was a tough time. But I’m really fine. Except for the running units, which are becoming more and more strenuous. That’s not so cool (laughs).

That was really something special. That I was received like that was really cool. I also had a tear or two in my eye. It wasn’t that easy. In general, I got so many messages and get well wishes from the fans that I couldn’t even answer them all. I’m actually trying, but there are still so many. Right from the start I felt a lot of strength. That was extremely good for me.

I didn’t have time to think about it, and I really don’t want to review it again. This is also important for the head. Of course it wasn’t easy. But it all happened relatively quickly. The day before I was supposed to fly to the training camp with Hertha, I thought I’d go back to the doctor’s because it had actually gotten a bit more painful. Then came the diagnosis and the very next day I was operated on. Everything went well. I didn’t have any pain afterwards, nothing at all. The scar looks good. It was difficult, but somehow I made it. Everything is out of my body.

I’m supposed to have an MRI every three or four months, although there’s little chance of that happening again. As for training, as long as the scar looks good, I can always increase the workload. So I think it won’t be that long anymore. Nevertheless, I’m careful to say: Every now and then I’ll get back into team training. But I’m on the right track.

I look from day to day: how I’m doing, what the scar is doing. As of now everything is fine. But I didn’t set myself a time limit. Of course, I’m a full-blooded footballer and I want to get back on the pitch and help the team as soon as possible. But I also have the backing of the entire coaching staff to take the time I need. I am very grateful for that.

I don’t think I’ve really worked through that yet because it’s something bigger. Tumor, cancer – that’s intense. But, of course, health comes first. That’s why my Instagram post was not without ulterior motives. That was another appeal: If anyone feels anything, they should definitely have it checked. The sooner the better. Unfortunately, you have that with Timo…

… and Sebastien …

… seen.

The first thought after the diagnosis was actually that you really don’t want to take it outside. Nevertheless, I believe that with our reach, we professional footballers can persuade many people to dare to take the step to the doctor. Even if it really is a kind of taboo subject for men. It’s just not that pleasant. But I hope that some people have changed their minds. That’s why I think it was the right step to go public with it.