Just a few days into 2020, Rot-Weiss Köln have made what is probably going to be one of the most eye-catching transfers of the year with two-time world goalkeeper of the year Vincent Vanasch set to move from Waterloo Ducks during the summer.
The 32-year-old helped the Belgian club win EHL Men in 2019 as well as lead his country to World Cup and European gold in the past 13 months.
He will replace German national goalkeeper Victor Aly who has already signalled his intent to return to his hometown of Hamburg after several strong seasons with the club.
The future Rot-Weiss keeper has committed himself on a long-term basis and said of his move: “I was looking for the last major challenge of my career and was curious to play in a new league.
“The culture, vision and ambitions of Rot-Weiss quickly convinced me to take this step. I have only one goal on the field: to win the German Championship and the EHL together with the team. In addition to the pitch, I look forward to getting to know German culture better and making many new friends.”
Rot-Weiss trainer André Henning said of the new arrival: “Vincent did not need to convince us in terms of sport; his performance and success speak for themselves.
“In the discussions, he enthused us with his down-to-earthness, his hard work, his extremely high will to win and the willingness to lead the team to hard work to achieve success. We are of course also looking forward to the international spirit that he will bring to our team.”
Aly moves on to progress his legal career. He originally joined Rot Weiss as number two to Mex Weinhold in 2012 before developing his game to be international class.
Henning added:: “Victor is one of the finest guys I’ve ever been able to train. An insanely loyal, unpretentious, trustworthy character who never tells you how good he is, but prefers to show it in his modesty and flow.
“He has made an outstanding development, has become one of the best in the world and is an anchor for everyone, both human and athletic. We already have a long way to go and now I’m looking forward to the coming months with him. ”
Aly said of his upcoming departure: “Cologne, Rot-Weiss and, above all, my team have become my second home over the past few years. I can only thank them for the opportunity I was given here and for this incredible time that I will never forget. Now I’m really looking forward to a successful six months as part of this team! ”