European Football Giants Arrive For The ICC
The Singapore leg of the International Champions Cup (ICC) is due to kick off on Tuesday (July 25), as Bundesliga champions FC Bayern Munich face off against English champions Chelsea FC at the Singapore Sports Hub at 7.35pm.
While most Singaporeans have already snapped up the surprisingly affordable tickets to watch their favourite European teams, the MustShareNews team managed to get a sneak peak of one of the football stars that are now on our sunny island.
Being important business partners and ambassadors for Bavarian tradition, Bayern Munich and German brewers Paulaner Munich organised a private autograph session for Singaporean fans of the Bundesliga Champions that included one Corentin Tolisso.
Arriving at Paulaner Brauhaus’ flagship restaurant at Millenia Walk on Monday (July 24) night for the press conference, I was nervous as hell.
After all it’s not every day that one gets to meet a top footballer, let alone the record signing of Bayern Munich.
Call Me ‘Coco’
When 22-year-old Corentin Tolisso first entered the dimly lit trophy room flanked by Bayern Munich legend Giovane Élbar and a translator, it was clear that he had no air of arrogance despite his 41.5 million euro (S$65.8 million) price tag.
They were introduced by the animated Bayern stadium announcer Stephan Lehmann, who clarified the pronunciation of the Frenchman’s name.
For the record, it’s “Ko-ren-tan Toh-lis-so”.
However, if that’s still a little difficult for our Asian tongues to twirl around, the youngster most considerately told us that we could call him “Coco”.
Despite his huge price tag, which is a a club and league record, the young Frenchman shared that he “never thinks (about) the price” and feels free.
Tolisso, however, added that he knows he has to repay the trust shown by the club in him.
In a report by ESPN, Bayern chief executive Karl-Heiz Rummenigge said that “Corentino Tolisso was (Bayern manager) Carlo Ancelotti’s wish for our midfield” following the retirement of the Spanish star Xabi Alonso.
Élbar shared that the club felt that Tolisso would have a “big career with Bayern Munich” after seeing him on the pitch. He also felt that Tolisso was young, and had all the “talent he needs”, but he had to put in hard work to become a big superstar.
In fact, the Frenchman has already been working hard to brush up on his German and English, with help from fellow French teammates Franck Ribery and Kingsley Coman.
Fighting For His Place
With Bayern’s recent capture of James Rodriguez on loan from Real Madrid, coupled with the presence of first-choice midfielders such as Arturo Vidal and Thiago Alcantara, competition for a starting booth will be intense.
Undeterred by the competition from such big names, Bayern’s new number 24 was confident, arguing that he “didn’t come to Bayern to be a bench player”.
He has big dreams, adding that he signed with Bayern to play in the Champions League, describing such games as “big games” that will help his push to make the French squad for the 2018 World Cup.
He has already shown what he can do for the team, as he made his Bayern debut earlier this month in the Telekom Cup 2017.
Well, whether Tolisso shines in the Champions League or not, he hasn’t disappointed the Bayern fans in Singapore — at least the rowdy crowd that was at Paulaner Brauhaus on Monday night.
Clad in their replica jerseys and armed with Bayern memorabilia, the “ultra” fans sang Bayern Munich chants and cheers as they waited for their turn to take photographs with the superstars and get their autographs.
A Night Of Pork Knuckles and Beer
Given his young age and the free beer, one would have forgiven Tolisso if he indulged in a sip or two of Paulaner’s but the young Frenchman clearly has his sights on performing well in today’s ICC.
The MustShareNews team wishes “Coco” all the best, and would like to thank Paulaner Brauerei GmbH and FC Bayern Munich for this opportunity to rub shoulders with a potential star of the future.