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Werder Bremen captain Clemens Fritz makes retirement U-turn

He was all set to hang up his boots in the summer, but Werder Bremen skipper Clemens Fritz has had a change of heart. He will stick around another year to help get his club out of their current predicament.

Werder Bremen’s veteran midfielder Clemens Fritz has reversed his decision to retire and will spend one more year with the relegation-threatened Bundesliga club.

The former German international, who also has 22 caps for the German national team, told the Werder Bremen website he will stay with the club until the end of his contract in 2017 - whichever division they are in - rather than hanging up his boots this summer.

The Green-Whites captain said he had to change his mind after a series of conversations with club management. "I can not leave the club after such a season,” he said. “When this season is over I will continue to lead the way to make it better.

“Either I will help to show everyone that we are a team that can perform better in the league or, in the worst case, I’ll give everything to lead Werder back into excellence…I will not stop.”

Fritz has made 16 appearances for the northern side this season and more than 250 in his ten years at the club he joined from Bayer Leverusen in 2006. Bremen currently occupy the relegation play off spot and play Stuttgart, who are one place and two points above them on Monday night.

mp/dv (dpa, SID)