Arsenal ladies sensation Rachel Yankey also lavished praise on the club.
Some of the world’s top footballers have showered praise on the facilities at Barnet FC after The Hive hosted both the German national team and a Women’s UEFA Champions League tie in the space of a week.
Germany trained on The Hive pitch days before their victory over England on Tuesday which followed on from Arsenal Ladies’ last 16 tie against Glasgow City the weekend prior.
Schalke midfielder Julian Draxler was among the German players to pay tribute to Barnet’s international class training facilities which have been previously used by Chile, Sweden, Portugal and five-time World Cup winners Brazil.
“It was good training session at The Hive and it was important for us to have a good preparation for the match against England,” Draxler said. “We were all very happy for the chance to train here and the facilities are excellent so it was very enjoyable for us.”
Mario Gotze, who this summer completed a £31.5m transfer from Borussia Dortmund to Bayern Munich, admitted he was pleasantly surprised by what he witnessed at The Hive.
“It was a pleasure to be here,” Gotze said. “The facilities were very good and there are a lot of places higher in the game that are not as good. It is quite extraordinary for a club like Barnet to have a place like this, they are in the fifth tier but their training areas are very good.”
Rachel Yankey, the most capped player in England history, was equally impressed with The Hive and suggested the stadium would be an ideal venue to host an England Women’s international match.
“It’s a brilliant ground to be honest and the location is great - right on the jubilee line for easy access – it’s the perfect ground for women’s football,” the Arsenal Ladies midfielder said. “I really hope the FA look at it to host an international game because I think it is a fantastic arena for an England game.
“Barnet are a great local football club,” she added. “It’s a great place to take kids and watch football and hopefully they can get even more support.”
image: © Michael Kranewitter