Vitaly Janelt has signed a new contract. The 23-year-old midfield player signed the new deal earlier today, Friday 1 April. The new contract will run until the summer of 2026.
The German midfield player has been almost ever-present since joining The Bees from Verein für Leibesübungen Bochum 1848 Fußballgemeinschaft, better known as VfL Bochum, in October 2020. He was part of the Brentford squad that won promotion to the Premier League last season, playing 47 games in all competitions. He has played 24 Premier League games this season and helped The Bees earn 30 points from their first 30 games in the top flight.
Thomas Frank, Brentford FC Head Coach, said: “I think Vitaly is a prime example of when we succeed with our recruitment and development of a player, we are good at finding young, talented players and maximising their potential. Vitaly came to us from the German second division, and we saw a lot of good things in him. He was able to come in and be part of the team right from the off.
“I remember in the first training session he performed fantastically. He anticipated everything and was in the right positions off the ball. He showed an unbelievable ability to press and drive the team. I think Vitaly has a great future ahead of him at Brentford and I hope in the coming seasons we will achieve his and the Club’s ambitions together.
“He is a very important player for the way we want to play. You know what you get from him off the ball and his ability with the ball is very good as well. This is great news for Brentford FC.”
It has been a memorable 18 months for Vitaly, who collected two trophies in a few days last summer. He scored three goals in 41 Sky Bet Championship matches to help The Bees finish third in the table. He played all three matches as Brentford won the Play-Offs, scoring in the Semi-Final Second Leg win over AFC Bournemouth.
After being part of the team which beat Swansea City in the Play-Off Final, Vitaly then joined up with the Germany Under-21 squad for the final stages of the UEFA European Under-21 Championships 2021. He featured in the win over The Netherlands in the last four and the victory over Portugal in the European Under-21 Championship Final to help his country take the title.
Vitaly played the later years of his academy career at Hamburger Sport-Verein e.V. but left the former European Cup winners after his Under-17 season. He moved to RasenBallsport Leipzig e.V. and played his first professional games for RB Leipzig II when he was 18. Vitaly had a loan spell at Bochum and then made a permanent switch in January 2017. He played 54 games for Bochum scoring two goals, 53 of those games coming in the Zweite Bundesliga, the second tier of German football.
Vitaly was also a regular part of the German team at youth levels. His first appearances for his country came as an Under-15 player and he has also played for Germany’s Under-17, Under-19 and Under-20 sides. He played for Germany in the FIFA Under-17 World Cup and UEFA Under-17 European Championships in 2015. Vitaly was part of the side that lost to France in the final of the European Championships and reached the last 16 of the World Cup.
Six years later he was in the Germany side that won a title and he played 31 games for his country in total. He then returned to West London for his first season as a Premier League player. He scored in the 3-3 draw against Liverpool and in the defeat to Southampton. Vitaly has played 75 games for Brentford so far in all competitions and scored six times.