Xaver Schlager did not have long to recuperate this summer. Barely two and a half weeks after his final outing for Austria at the UEFA Under-21 European Championship, the youngster took part in his first Wolves training session alongside fellow U21 EURO stars Felix Uduokhai and Josip Brekalo. After embarking on a fresh chapter in his fledgling career, Schlager sat down with us to discuss his first impressions of Wolfsburg, Pavao Pervan’s role in bringing him to the club and his expectations ahead of the coming season.
Hi Xaver. You took part in your first training session with your new team-mates this morning. What do you make of the team and the session itself?
Xaver Schlager: “The standard was very high in training. I’ve already noticed there are a lot of cool guys in the team. Training is obviously a little different, but it was also very exciting for me. I’m just pleased to be here and get started.”
You had numerous offers from other clubs. Why did you decide to move to VfL Wolfsburg?
Xaver: “The club has a lot of things going for it. VfL made a big effort to sign me but still gave me enough time and space to make my decision. There was no need for me to rush. I also got a taste of the surroundings before signing - the training facilities and the squad are very strong. Everything was just right.”
Did “Pavo” play a role in getting you to join the club?
Xaver: “While we were with the national team I spoke to him about VfL and he just told me that things are great in Wolfsburg. I was able to confirm as much after having a look around in person.”
You’ve been given the number 24 shirt (order online now). Does that number hold a special significance for you?
Xaver: “I originally wanted number 42, but you can only choose numbers up to 40 in Germany. That’s why I simply switched the numbers around. I was also lucky that the number was still available.”