Lukas Podolski is to try his luck at ice hockey with Kolner Haie after spearheading a successful campaign to keep his local club afloat.

Former Germany forward Podolski, who now plies his trade for Antalyaspor in the Super Lig, promised to represent Haie if they could sell 100,000 virtual tickets.

The eight-time DEL champions achieved that target, ensuring they are able to compete in the 2020-21 campaign after avoiding bankruptcy proceedings.

And Podolski has vowed to keep to his word of playing for Haie - one of Germany's most famous clubs - in the coming season.
"I am extremely happy for the Haie (sharks), that we got the 100.000 tickets," he said. "I just want to say thank you to all the people and companies that helped us.

"Once everything is a little more calm we'll sit together with the club to see how this continues. Whatever it will look like: I am looking forward to being a Haie player."

Cologne-based Haie are coached by former Stanley Cup winner Uwe Krupp and finished 11th in last season's curtailed DEL season.