Three Words with ...
Reflecting on the extraordinary, yet challenging years of his youth all the way to scoring four goals in a magical Champions League match in London, the FC Bayern München star talks about the importance of self-confidence, the beauty of experiencing different cultures, as well as having that little bit extra.
The most important thing for me is to go out there and have fun. I was never afraid to look for a new challenge or take on the next task when it was put in front of me.
I was very young when I moved to the UK and obviously it was a hard thing to do at that age, but having the persistence and self-confidence to just leave home and try something new took me to the stage I’m at now. Of course, you hit a point when growing up where other things become more interesting, but that never changed the way I thought about football and the love I have for the sport.
My father also played a huge part in bringing me to this level. I still remember that it was challenging at times to combine both school and football, but he would always do extra sessions with me and help analyze games whenever we had a free minute. So, going the extra mile definitely helped me in reaching the best version of myself.
Just in general, living abroad, meeting so many different people and experiencing countless new cultures helps all of us to come closer together and just be more human.
So yeah, I’m trying to surround myself with those people that make you think differently, challenge you and try to bring the best out of you. And that’s exactly what I want to represent to the outside world as well. I want to be a role model and push for change so that we can live in an equal world.
You’ve always got to be there for the team and follow tactics, but you sometimes just need that little bit of extra sauce in life that makes the difference. I love to be creative both on and off the pitch and I’m sure that, to be one of the best, you need to push for more. It already started back when I was younger – always thinking fast, always playing offensive and always looking to create. That’s my style and the way I play, and I think it also describes me pretty well as a human being.