"I'm very happy with how well it's gone. I can now say that the move to TSG has been the best and most important step in my career. I found my feet here very quickly. It's my fourth year here and I've been an almost constant presence in the team. I'm happy with my personal development, and satisfied too. I'm very thankful, but I try to express my thanks in the form of performances on the pitch. I hope that the past three years have given the supporters more positive memories than negative experiences."
The defensive specialist has been the TSG captain since the start of last season – and wearing the armband has been an honour. "In terms of the way I carry myself, I've been the same since day one," said the Witten native. "I haven't had to transform myself as a person so that people would say: 'We want you to be our captain.' It just happened. I don't need to be the loudest voice in every discussion. I obviously talk just as much nonsense as the other lads when we're not on the pitch. I'm one of them. I'm obviously proud to be the captain, but that doesn't mean that I'm above anyone else. The lads respect me because of the way I am naturally, not because I wear the captain's armband."
Having previously played in defensive midfield, Vogt was converted into a centre-back following his 2016 arrival – and he quickly assumed the central role in a three-man rearguard. The 28-year-old believes the switch was a stroke of good fortune. "Many people then wondered: 'Why is Vogt so quick?' I obviously knew that but in my position as a No. 6 I didn't often get the chance to show it. Julian Nagelsmann also felt my passing game made me a good fit for defence. It was a win-win situation – both for me and the team. It was as if the position was made for me. I soon started to take a shine to it. Now playing at the back is my ideal position, whether it's in a back three or a back four. I'm really flexible in that respect."
The TSG captain has lived in Heidelberg since joining the club, and the university city feels like a second home to him. "I instantly felt very comfortable here, both in Heidelberg and at the club. It has a family feel to it, everything is a little bit smaller. I feel really at home here. That's a very important factor in enabling me to produce good performances in the long term. If you have to be somewhere where you don't feel comfortable and don't want to be on a daily basis, it's counterproductive. Heidelberg has become a second home for me."
SPIELFELD is the TSG 1899 Hoffenheim club magazine. Brimming with important content about TSG and the region, SPIELFELD is published 11 times per year. You can pick up your copy free of charge in the Fan Shop – or have it delivered to your home. The shipping cost is only €18.99.
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