VfL Wolfsburg Frauen Cheftrainer Tommy Stroot.

“A family day”

VfL Women coach Tommy Stroot on his upcoming birthday.

VfL Wolfsburg Frauen Cheftrainer Tommy Stroot.

For Tommy Stroot, the recent postponement of the game against 1. FFC Turbine Potsdam marked the end of his first big stage as VfL Women head coach. The 32-year-old has led the She-Wolves to the top of the FLYERALARM Women’s Bundesliga during his first half-season in charge, as well as reaching the quarter-finals of the UEFA Women’s Champions League Stroot is now hoping for a few days’ rest before he welcomes back his players for their mid-season preparations in January, although he has more reason than most to celebrate on Christmas Eve.

Tommy, how special is it to have a birthday on Christmas Eve?

Stroot: “I always say it’s my birthday until 6pm, then it’s Christmas Eve. For me, 24 December has been a family day for as long as I can remember. In the morning, we always have breakfast together and the whole family gets together – that’s the birthday part for me. Then from 6pm onwards it’s Christmas Eve. By then my birthday is forgotten and it’s all about Christmas.”

As a kid, did you feel like you were missing out when your friends were given another party and presents during the year?

Stroot: “In general, I didn’t have a problem as a kid when others were given things on my birthday, but when I was very young and others had their birthdays and I didn’t get anything, there were problems (laughs). No, not really. It took some getting used to, but my presents on the 24th were always a bit bigger to make up for it.”

If the game against Turbine Potsdam hadn’t been postponed, Lena Oberdorf would have been on the pitch on her birthday. That can’t happen to you at least…

Stroot: “That’s definitely an advantage! I’ve never had to work on my birthday, which is important to me. For me, 24 December isn’t just about my big day but also for family, togetherness and companionship. There isn’t enough of that, in particular in these fast-paced times.”

You’ve not celebrated too many birthdays yet. How does your young age affect your work as a coach?

Stroot: “That’s not really something at the forefront of my mind. Maybe it’s more of an advantage because I’m closer to the girls, so I understand certain things better and speak the same language to a certain extent. I don’t worry about anything else, I’ve been in the business too long for that. Five years ago, some of the players were older than me – that’s changing more and more every year. The next step will be that I’m the oldest in the group!”



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