The first chapter of a success story
Expectations were high when the FC Bayern Campus opened exactly one year ago. "The Campus could be our answer to the transfer madness," said president Uli Hoeneß at the official opening ceremony for the new academy at the German record champions. In the immediate vicinity of the Allianz Arena, the Bayern stars of tomorrow are to be trained in-house and FC Bayern have invested €70 million in the new facility. A positive interim assessment has been drawn a year after the Campus opened.
"With the Campus we've not only caught up with other clubs but have also set new standards," said Jochen Sauer, director of the FC Bayern Campus. His sporting counterpart Herman Gerland expressed his satisfaction with the work to date: "We've had a good first season with our teams at the Campus."
But more importantly: FC Bayern have probably never before brought through so many youth players to the first team squad as in this summer. A total of eight players from the youth teams have been awarded a long-term contract. In addition, nine of the youngsters have moved on to first or second division clubs in Germany and Austria. Another indication of the outstanding development of the youth section at FC Bayern were last season's professional debuts for Marco Friedl, Lukas Mai, Meritan Shabani, Niklas Dorsch, Franck Evina and Kwasi Okyere 'Otschi' Wriedt.
Constant exchange of ideas
Recently there have been a number of construction projects aimed at helping to further improve conditions at the Campus. The ground received a makeover in time for the first birthday. As with the redevelopment of the Allianz Arena, the stairs were painted red and the same happened with the zone markings in the stands. In the North Stand, the grey façade was exchanged for red and two large Bayern logos cited in the centre of the two stands. "The stadium is now even more of an FC Bayern stadium," said Sauer.
Further construction work has been carried out at the Academy with the building of additional apartments. Now up to 43 talented youngsters can be housed here. Lounges for players who don't live at the Campus have also been added. Over recent months undersoil heating has been installed to ensure the U17 training ground can be used in the winter. On top of that, a new training ground is being constructed to further improve the training facilities for the youngest teams.
"We constantly exchange ideas with all members of staff to ensure maximum use of the facilities at the Campus. With this construction work we have further improved the training and education opportunities for our talented youngsters," said Sauer. "We will continue to give 100 per cent and do everything we can to help one or two more players make it to the top," said Gerland. fcbayern.com says: Happy birthday, FC Bayern Campus.