A run-down of the programme of events:
The final friendly
The match against Real Club Celta de Vigo from the Primera Division is the seventh and final pre-season friendly for the Werkself. The game against the team that finished thirteenth in the Spanish top-flight last term is also a dress rehearsal for Heiko Herrlich ahead of the first competitive fixture of the new campaign in the DFB Cup tie at Karlsruhe SC on 11 August. One familiar face in the team of the new coach Eduardo Berizzo is Marcelo Diaz who played for Hamburg SV in the Bundesliga up to the last winter break. The fact that Celta Vigo will provide a stiff test for the Werkself is evident given that the team from Galicia year in the north-west of Spain reached the semi-finals of the Europa League last season where they went out to the eventual winners Manchester United.
What can be expected from the Werkself in the coming season? What are the targets for the team and coach ahead of the new campaign? How was the training camp in Salzburger Land? Questions that Werkself fans will find the answers to first hand at the season launch event on Saturday. There are two round-table discussions: At half-time in the game against Celta Vigo, CEO Michael Schade and sporting director Rudi Völler are due to be on the microphone from around 14.50 CET and after the game, head coach Heiko Herrlich will assess the Bayer 04 team's performance at around 15.50 CET.
Centre stage: the team
Ahead of the kick-off against Celta Vigo at 14.00 CET, all the Werkself players will be introduced to the crowd by stadium announcers Pitti Dahl and Tobias Ufer. The first team squad are also centre of attention to round off the big season launch event. The traditional first team autograph session will be staged inside the BayArena at around 16.45 CET with Heiko Herrlich, Sven Bender and Co. on hand to sign the brand-new autograph cards. Access to the autograph session after the game against Celta Vigo is via the Piazza at the north-west of the BayArena. Werkself fans can also get the signatures of their favourite players or have selfies taken with them at the Bayer 04 public training sessions.
Music maestro please
Last summer it was Max Giesinger who provided the musical entertainment for the fans at the season launch at the BayArena and Bayer 04 have organised another musical showpiece for the supporters: The German chart topper Wincent Weiss will be on stage from 13.20 CET to perform well-known hits and other songs. "After last season's great success with Max Giesinger we are proud to present another star performer ahead of the important friendly in the shape of Wincent Weiss," declared event director Stephan Rehm.
Fun and games for young and old
From the opening of the stadium at noon, the concourse at the BayArena will be a huge play area for young and old. Barmenia present the SUTU football wall, a digital goal wall, to test the technical ability of the Werkself fans. Kit supplier JAKO invites fans to take part in football golf, and with pronovaBKK supporters can acquire a memento photograph in the photo box. A dribbling course, football darts, pool, the Tinwin football, mini-Robo keeper, speed kicker and the Bayer 04 bouncy castle provide other attractions. And, of course the Club mobile stand and the Bayer 04 Schwadbus will also be at the BayArena for the pre-season fest.
Here is the link to the lay-out of the various games at the BayArena.
One free drink
All tickets to the big Bayer 04 season launch include a voucher for a free drink that can be redeemed at the kiosks in and around the stadium. In addition they are also valid for the journey to and from the stadium using the VRR and VRS public transport networks. Free shuttle bus service will run from the car park at Kurtekotten to the BayArena from 12 noon. After the end of the game, wupsi buses will be waiting at the stadium from 15.45 CET destined for Forellental via Opladen bus station. Shuttle buses to Kurtekotten will be available at the Stadtpark. After the end of the game there will also be a bus to Rheindorf and Bergisch Gladbach. From 16.30 CET to the end of the event at 18.45 CET two buses will provide a shuttle service to the shuttle bus parking facility or to Opladen bus station according to demand.
Additional ticket information
Tickets for the season launch are available for five euros (adult) and three euros (concessions) at all Bayer 04 shops as well as at the Service Centre at the BayArena. The ticket offices open at noon on the matchday. Season ticket holders for the new season can acquire a free ticket via the Bayer 04 Service Centre or the shops. As usual, rucksacks and large bags are not permitted in the stadium.
12.00 CET: BayArena opens
12.45: Löwenclub matches
13.20: Wincent Weiss performs
14.00: Bayer 04 v Celta Vigo
14.50: Discussion event with Michael Schade and Rudi Völler
15.50: Discussion event with Heiko Herrlich
16.45: Autograph session
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