Hamburger SV opened their 2022-2023 campaign with a 2-0 victory away from home against Eintracht Braunschweig. Manager Tim Walter ran a 4-3-3, with the fullbacks inverting on the offensive end at times, and broke down the Braunschweig defense through accurate passing and possession. HSV held 69% of possession, but Braunschweig out shot them 24-16 through great transition play that just lacked finishing touch. Braunschweig’s back five in their 5-3-2 held up through the second, but the amount of ball they allowed Hamburg to possess eventually caught up with them. Hamburg may be on a promotion push this season, but Braunschweig has energy on offense to keep an eye on.
- A1 – Very good, could play higher
- A2 – Strong potential to play higher
- B1 – Good, strong player at level
- B2 – Potential to be a strong player at level
- C – Average for the level, rewatch
- D – Below average in this match
- Nationality: Ghanaian/German
- Age: 20
- Date of birth: 13/09/2001
- Club: Hamburger SV
- Career: Hertha BSC (Y), Dynamo Dresden, Hamburger SV
- Position: Right Winger
- Preferred foot: Right
- Other Positions: Center Forward, Right Wingback
Ransford-Yeboah Königsdörffer showed a lot of what he has to offer on the right wing in this matchup before being subbed off in the 60th minute. He has a sturdy frame to ward off defenders with, standing at 1.83 meters, although he seems a bit shorter. With that, his body seems very mature for only being 20 years old, which helps him in senior football a lot. To pair with his frame, he has outstanding pace to stretch the pitch with. When he sets off for a run, which he does often, it begins with a huge burst of explosion and will often catch his marker off guard. Königsdörffer likes to curve the runs inside from the wing and carve out the defenders. Going toward goal with that pace poses such a threat and he knows and embraces it. These runs also took place centrally, especially on the break.
Königsdörffer also utilizes this pace on defense. His pace threatens on the press, and he pursues with good aggression. The aggression does get out of hand sometimes, as he picked up a yellow card in this match for holding his man’s arm while pressing up the field. Königsdörffer’s pace also showed up defensively when he came flying into the box to make a last-ditch effort on an open man to stop a potential goal. This instance flashed some defensive instincts that also showed up on an interception he made in the second half.
Technically, Königsdörffer has masterful control of the ball with is right foot. Combined with his hip bend, body control, and center of gravity, it looked like no one could get the ball off him no matter how hard they tried to put in a tackle or push him over. He performed ball rolls with ease and worked in his left foot, too. The left foot is definitely weaker as he misplaced a pass with it, but he puts in an effort to use it, so the potential for it to get better is there. Overall, though, he has a clinical control over the ball. His flair and composure with the ball at his feet cannot be understated.
Königsdörffer showcased his creativity in this match, too. On the ball, he stayed calm and was decisive under pressure. The ball came out quick and timely. There was only one or two instances where there was any hesitation at all. The game just seems to move slowly in front of him and he has it under control. The more space Königsdörffer gets though, the more creative he can be. In those spaces, he is looking for the best pass to get his team the goal they need. I imagine this will get better the more he gets used to his new teammates and the more trust he gains from them and Tim Walter. Königsdörffer also had a shot attempt in this game but it was nothing to write home about. He loved working inside despite operating as more of a wide winger in this match, but he was comfortable in those wide spaces.
Off the ball, his runs were so important to Hamburg’s tactics. It helped open up the pitch, and again his burst was spectacular. Königsdörffer’s timing on them was always intelligent, too. His football IQ also showed in his off ball movement when he would rotate to create space for his teammates on or approaching the right flank. Those intricacies are key to making the step to a higher level of play.
Rating – A2
Königsdörffer is a Bundesliga capable player already but continuing to prove his talent in a higher quality team in 2. Bundesliga than Dynamo Dresden was probably the right move for this season. He is position versatile, so if Hamburg does not get promoted as they hope, suitors from the top tier should be lining up if he continues like this. His love for the center of the pitch should not rule him out as a center forward and his creativity could lend him to a false 9 role, too. As Königsdörffer’s body fills out his play style could mirror Adama Traore more and more, keeping him on that right wing. His defense is not quite there to play right wingback permanently, but there is potential in it. Some defensive development could make him a VfB Stuttgart target as an eventual replacement for Silas Katompa Mvumpa. Overall, Königsdörffer put in a good shift and flashed high potential with ball control, mentality, creativity, and raw athleticism.