Transfer Tracker

St. Louis CITY sign DP midfielder Marcel Hartel

Marcel Hartel - St. Louis CITY - transfer 1


St. Louis CITY SC have signed midfielder Marcel Hartel as a Designated Player, the club announced Tuesday.

Hartel is under contract through June 2028 with an option for the remainder of 2028. To acquire Hartel, St. Louis sent the Columbus Crew $350,000 in General Allocation Money for his Discovery Rights.

The 28-year-old last played for FC St. Pauli, helping them earn promotion to the German Bundesliga after totaling 17g/13a in 33 matches. Hartel has made additional stops at 1. FC Köln, Union Berlin and Arminia Bielefeld in his native Germany.

"We are happy to have locked this deal down to bring in a high-caliber midfielder such as Marcel to St. Louis," sporting director Lutz Pfannenstiel said in a statement. "His ability to create and finish will give us a dual threat to help lift our attack."

Hartel is St. Louis' third international signing this summer, joining defender/midfielder Jake Girdwood-Reich and attacking midfielder Cedric Teuchert. Girdwood-Reich arrives from Australian top-flight side Sydney FC, while Teuchert last played for Hannover 96 in Germany's 2. Bundesliga.

All three players can debut once the MLS Secondary Transfer Window opens on July 18.

"As a club, we’ve always been prepared to make investments that will improve the quality of our squad, so long as we find the right fit," club president and general manager Diego Gigliani said.

"Marcel’s arrival as one of our three Designated Players highlights the confidence we have in him, both as a player and as a leader. We’re convinced he will make an important positive impact on our team and continue highlighting how high-quality players in the peak of their career are making the MLS their league of choice."

St. Louis have struggled to recapture the heights of their 2023 MLS debut, when they topped the Western Conference and broke several expansion-club records.

Currently, St. Louis are 12th in the West and outside the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs field. They parted ways with head coach Bradley Carnell on Monday.