Any discerning athlete knows how crucial nutrition is to achieving good performance. Bartel Dewulf, the Red Devils cook for almost 5 years, understood it well: “Food is so important. Not only because it’s the fuel players need to win, but also because it’s a fun time.“, he confides in the columns of HLN this Thursday.
In an interview with our Flemish colleagues, chef Dewulf reveals what is going on in the kitchens of the Devils training center in Tubize. Every day, from 5:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m., the team of cooks is in the kitchen to offer the best products to Belgian footballers. The dishes offered to the Devils logically depend on their needs: “What exactly they can eat depends on the day“, explains the chef.”Is this a normal training day? Are we two days away from a game? One day? Or is it the day after the match? Depending on this, there is something different on the menu. The closer the day to the game, the more sugars and carbohydrates players need and the less vegetables they are served.“, continues the chef.
The weak of the Devils? The spread with speculoos!
The only time the Devils can step aside is when they come back from a game: “When they get to the hotel it’s the only time they can eat anything, even chips with mayo, a freshly made beef burger, chicken pita and ice cream.“, assures Bartel Dewulf.
Over the years, the chef has learned about the culinary preferences of our footballers. “Devils love to eat speculoos spread. As this does not exist everywhere, we always take a few jars with us when we are on the move! “, explains the chef, who specifies that the Devils also have a weakness for chops, chicken sausages, lasagna and shrimp. Bartel Dewulf even has a few anecdotes about some players:”Jan Vertonghen always asks for applesauce“, smiles the chef.