The new Santander FohlenStall was opened on Thursday at BORUSSIA-PARK.
After the Santander FohlenCampus was opened to the public, the celebrations took place of the successful completion of the club’s new project. “Today is a fantastic day for Borussia,” said club President Rolf Königs, who labeled the project as a “second step” after the erection of the FohlenCampus in 2014.”Youth is our DNA,” stated chief executive Stephan Schippers, whilst sporting director Max Eberl added, “the FohlenStall is fundamental to the development of our club’s youth.”
“With the addition of this project, we have created even more possibilities to develop fantastic young players,” said Eberl, who expressed his thanks to Santander for the financing of the building, along with Königs and Schippers. “In football at the highest level and also in the finance sector, the development of youth is an important part of being successful in the future. As the main youth sponsor of the club, we have been able to support Borussia with the introduction of the Santander FohlenStall. We are convinced that the set-up will help to develop many future stars for the club,” said Vito Volpe, chief executive officer of Santander Consumer Bank AG.
Players have already moved in
The Gladbach players have already moved into the new the Santander FohlenStall setup.. The building has been under construction for the past 14 months and is located on the “Am Borussiapark” road. “In the new boarding house, the players will be in a much quieter environment compared to the stadium. Once the Hotel and FohlenWelt is open, the number of visitors will increase. Nevertheless, the distance to the changing rooms and training pitches remains very short,” said Roland Virkus, head of Borussia’s youth academy.
Sauna and indoor football and tennis pitches
The building will be decorated with “Die Fohlen” in large lettering. This will be next to a large Borussia diamond and the words “Santander FOHLENSTALL” green and black. Inside, there will be around 2,060 square metres of floor space over four floors. Among the facilities is a sauna for regeneration and a second indoor football-tennis court with artificial grass. There are also apartments that can accommodate a total of 24 junior players. Since October 2004, the previous facilities only accomodated 12 youngsters. “Working with young talent is an important part of our philosophy. The new boarding school gives us more opportunity to field and develop new talent,” said Virkus. “As well as this, due to the increased capacity we are now able to accommodate a player who is undergoing trials with us.”
25 square metre rooms
The rooms are all 25 square metres and have ensuite bathrooms. The rooms in the shared apartments are the same size, but are connected to each other via a corridor and a shared doorway. Jonas Pfalz and Jordi Bongard are the first pair to move into a shared apartment. The single rooms were designed to be on the north side of the new construction, looking over the BORUSSIA-PARK training pitches. Behadil 'Benko' Sabani and Alper Arslan are just two players to have bagged these. As the players who had already lived in the boarding school the longest, they were allowed to pick their rooms first. "Age was the second criterium. We created a ballot based on this, and the players were able to choose their rooms in order," explains boarding school head Marc Trostel. Therefore, after Pfalz and Bongard, as well as Sabani and Arslan, came Cem Dag, Don Nweke, Julian Niehues, Sander Christiansen, Kushtrim Asallari, Jonas Simon, Luis Werrmann, Max Schreiber, Noah Oke Eyawo, Ryan Adigo, Mika Schroers, Michael Wentzel, Luiz Skraback, Merlin Schlosser, Famana Quizera and Roland Bekker.
Married couple Lintjens will continue to look after the boarding school
The young Foals in the Santander FohlenStall will continue to be under the care of Birgitt and Wolfgang Lintjens, who have also moved into the new building. Meanwhile, all the function rooms as well as the players' rooms have been furbished by Haus Freudenberg GmbH: "The quality of the furniture, as well as the house's concept, impressed us," says Virkus.