In spite of the icy cold, it was clear to see that the young and more experienced players were having fun in the warm-up routine for the four junior teams. Following the obligatory group photo, the U11 squad completed a rondo with Jonathan Tah and Ayman Azhil while the U10 players started with a practice match in restricted space under the guidance of Xabi Alonso's assistant coach Alberto Encinas working in tandem with Zidan Sertdemir.
Werkself skipper Lukas Hradecky, Joshua Eze and goalkeeping coach David Thiel ran the session with the U9 age group while central defender Edmond Tapsoba together with Alonso's assistant coach Sebastian Parrilla worked with the youngest junior players in the U8 squad.
For the Bayer 04 number one Lukas Hradecky, the goal he was protecting on the night was of different dimensions and significantly smaller than usual: The 6 foot 3 Finn wore a green bib in goal for the U9s, the second youngest Werkself team.
Hradecky again and again encouraged the young players during the practice match, giving them tips and advice – and he was full of praise for saves made by his opposite number.
Following the training session watched by numerous parents, the youngsters and senior players finished the evening with pizzas in the dressing rooms at the Kurtekotten Performance Centre. The U8 to U11 players also had the opportunity to put questions to Hradecky, Tah and Co as well as capturing the moment with photos and autographs.
Another group of players from the Werkself squad trained with the U12 to U15 teams last week. Here is the report on the first part of the Werkself visits to Kurtekotten.
The Werkself host Paderborn in the DFB-Pokal round of 16 today, Wednesday 6 December (18:00 CET) at the BayArena. Here’s all the latest information ahead of the cup clash with the Bundesliga 2 club.Show more
Next year marks Bayer 04’s 120th birthday. To celebrate the occasion, we would like to take the opportunity, today and in the next few months, to regularly look at football under the Cross on bayer04.de and primarily delve into the question of: How have we become the club we are today? Part two of our series looks at our fans. Werkself supporters are enjoying this season like never before, providing incredible support both home and away.Show more
The Bundesliga has named the three nominees for November’s Rookie of the Month award. Werkself striker Victor Boniface, who has won the trophy in August, September and October, is once again up for the award. Fans have the chance to pick the winner by casting their votes online.Show more
Following the weekend’s draw against Borussia Dortmund in the Bundesliga, the Werkself are again at home on Wednesday for the visit of Paderborn to the BayArena in the DFB-Pokal last 16 (kick-off: 18:00 CET). Ahead of the game, head coach Xavi Alonso made it abundantly clear that his team will in no way underestimate their Bundesliga 2 opponents.Show more