The Singapore team has teamed up with the Bundesliga giants as they seek to take the next step on the road to becoming a continental power.
Lion City Sailors, the Premier League in Singapore, have agreed a two-and-a-half-year partnership with Bundesliga giants Borussia Dortmund, the club announced. The agreement will include a range of youth development programs, coaching, educational and professional exchanges as well as football training camps in Germany, which will make the already glowing range of options available to LCS youth team players.
As the club in Bishan has already invested heavily in their academy, with chairman Forrest Li pouring $ 10 million into building a sprawling new training facility, the bond with BVB was set to take youth coaching at the club to the next level. take. .
“We are proud to strengthen this partnership with LCS, one of the most exciting football clubs in the SPL,” said Benedikt Scholz, head of International & New Business and managing director of BVB Football Academy. “The establishment of key partners of this magnitude and ambition has always been a central part of our vision for BVB, which has enabled us to remain a part and contribute to the growth of youth football in Asia.”
“We look forward to working with LCS to bring our main goals in youth development and sports education to life.”
With Dortmund widely recognized as one of the biggest talent producers of European football, bringing people like Marco Reus and Mario Gotze, while nurturing players like Shinji Kagawa, Jadon Sancho and Erling Haaland in world-famous stars, the deal represents a major coup for the Singapore club looking for waves in the continental game.
A very tangible benefit of the tenacity is the annual training camps in Dortmund for the club’s elite development team, with an additional period in Westphalia being selected for selected players from the Academy’s bursary program.
It would not be Dortmund’s first venture into Singapore’s football – they actually signed a five-year partnership with Warriors FC in 2018, but because the club was forced to cease operations a year later, the collaboration could never corridor does not go. Suresh Letchmanan, managing director of BVB Asia Pacific, was convinced that this time it would be different.
‘The Warriors partnership gave us an opportunity – we complied with our part of the agreement. We had our own staff, we had Lars (Ricken), Benedikt, Karl-Heinz Riedler, Roman Weidenfeller, and we had a fair number of experts on the ground on and off the field. “Unfortunately, that is what it is, but it does not end there,” he emphasized.
“We have a lot to offer Singapore, and I do not see why we can not continue this relationship and build a great pillar for football in Singapore,” he continued. “LCS obviously has the right infrastructure, the right set-up, and that will enable not only the players but also the staff to work closely with the team in Dortmund.”
UEFA Champions League winner of 1997, Lars Ricken, said during the virtual press release: Eager to announce that students of LCS’s scholarship program selected to travel to Dortmund will have the opportunity to train with Dortmund’s own youth teams and to play.
“We have had students from Southeast Asia before, and they practiced with us, they played friendly matches with us and were taught by our coaches. We hope that this will also happen in our cooperation with the Sailors – we want to implement it. We want to see Sailors players here in our own area, ”he explained.
As the pandemic is still raging, LCS CEO Chew Chun-Liang accepts that some changes need to be made in the short to medium term.
“We follow a moderate approach,” he analyzed. ‘The health and safety of players and staff is important, which is why we plan to start the next few months with the education and coaching sessions that are practically done. We believe that next year will be a good time for our youth team to attend a training camp in Dortmund. ”
“We are an ambitious club with the vision to become one of the best in Asia,” he added. “To get there, we have to learn from the best, and in BVB we found a partner who is one of the best in the world.”
“We are looking forward to a long and fruitful relationship with BVB.”
FAS general secretary Yazeen Buhari praised the initiative and praised the positive ripple effect it could have on the local football scene.
“LCS has shown a firm commitment to take the sport to the next level, while BVB continues to see value and confidence in Singapore’s football,” he said. ‘I would like to praise what the Sailors have introduced over the past year. Such a driving force will only be beneficial to us, and their efforts will surely have an effect on the rest of the football fraternity. ”