Empty repositories after restoring


I’ve had to rebuild our gitlab server from scratch. (i.e new deployment of gitlab-CE on a new VM).
After restoring the tar backup, gitlab.rb and gitlab-secrets.json successfully, sanitizing and reconfiguring i’m able to login and the server is running fine.
The projects, users, groups and jobs appear as they where at the date of the backup.

With the exception of the repositories…
They are empty, showing the following message: repository: does not exist

LFS was activated at some point in the past but i’m not sure if this is relevant.

My question is, can I tar pipe the repositories from the old server to the new one as explained here:
Should i be expecting side effects or extra steps ? Is there another method i should investigate ?

Thank you for your help.