Originating as a multi-sports group in 1945 for Volkswagen workers, VFL Wolfsburg have developed through the decades into one of the most successful footballing sides in Germany. Regular UEFA and Intertoto Cup competitors, they enter The NextGen Series as A-Junioren Bundesliga champions.
Based in an impressive new youth training centre just outside Wolfsburg, Academy Manager Fabian Wohlgemuth, and his staff concentrate on an holistic development approach. This has led to the emergence of Tolga Cigerci, Michael Schulze and Kevin Scheidhauer amongst others. Now all first team players, they benefitted from Wolfsburg’s strategy of intergrating certain players into first and reserve teams for various training sessions.
Looking to assert their own style of play on the tournament – ‘a short passing game with dominant and tempo-orientated offensive football’ - Wohlgemuth notes ‘it’ll be very interesting to observe what style of play others have developed.’ It is this opportunity to measure his young team’s talent against the best young footballers in Europe whilst offering them their first taste of international football that excites the manager.
Despite an awkward group consisting of Barcelona, Tottenham Hotspur and Anderlecht, Wohlgemuth points out that the German Academy champions ‘certainly have no need to hide.’