With three months to go before the World Cup in Qatar, every game counts for French internationals and potential members of Didier Deschamps’s list. And this weekend, it was Mathys Tel who picked up the phone. After appearing at the Stade Rennes and being transferred to Bayern Munich, the 17-year-old striker broke a new record by scoring his first goal for the Bavarians. Enough to glimpse a beautiful destination for hope, either in Germany or with France.
A run forward to reach the penalty area, a cross back from Alphonso Davies to put him in the best possible condition and a serene shot from the left to fool Florian Müller: these are the three steps necessary for Mathys Tel to mark history so much. of Bayern Munich and his first goal with the Bavarians, in the League. Against Stuttgart this Saturday, on the occasion of the sixth day of the Bundesliga, the former Stade Rennes signed for about 30 million euros thus found the net by opening the scoring after half an hour.
Not enough to offer victory to his team, which conceded the equalizer due to a Serhou Guirassy penalty conceded in added time, but enough to set a great record: at 17 years and 136 days, the striker became the record scorer youngest player in his club’s history in the league (ahead of Jamal Musiala, 17 years and 205 days). After having already been the youngest in the history of his club to consolidate in this same competition. And after having already been the youngest of his club to score in the cup. It was August 31, 2022 for a personal feat against Viktoria Colonia, for a great success (5-0) and an easy classification. There is something worse, like the beginning of the German adventure.
Easier at Bayern Munich than at Stade de Rennes
Never starting among the professionals and never a goalscorer either when he was still playing in Brittany, so Tel is already doing better than he was in France when he crossed the borders just a month and a half ago. Which did not fail to make Hasan Salihamidžić react, the sporting director did not go out of his way to describe his satisfaction with his nugget in Sport 1: “He is 17 years old, but he has qualities that few people in the world have. In my opinion, he is the best talent in Europe in this position. He has the potential, the instinct to be great… What an introduction! In training he shows a lot of desire and has all the necessary skills to prevail at the highest level. If he continues to take advantage of his opportunity and take advantage of his enormous potential, he will have a great future. »
It is that the Frenchman not only shook the nets, for his first appearance in the starting eleven in the League. Dangerous and active, the former Clairefontaine tried hard (three shots, including two on goal, nobody did better) and was quite accurate (87% successful passes). Not forgetting to dare to haggle, something not necessarily obvious for a debutant who has not yet come of age. Moreover, the native of Sarcelles was replaced by Leroy Sané half an hour from the end and therefore only played 61 minutes.
Didier Deschamps as delighted as Julian Nagelsmann?
It must be said that Tel, the youngest player in the history of Rennes to have set foot on a professional pitch (with only 16 brooms and 110 days), had warned his world before leaving France. All the educators, interviewed here and there, who have seen him at work paint a glowing portrait of the child: talented, of course, but also complete and mature or even versatile. A profile capable of adapting to one of the largest structures in the world, and that delighted Julian Nagelsmann. “He’s strong, fast. In addition, he can play in various positions. One day he can become one of the best strikers on the planet.” This is how the Munich coach launched it bluntly, at a press conference.
— FC Bayern München (@FCBayern) July 26, 2022
From there to seeing him in the small roles of Didier Deschamps, currently fine-tuning his roster for the World Cup that kicks off in November? Obviously, it is (much) too early to answer affirmatively, the presence in the selection requires a much more extensive and experienced course. But maybe the path of the Blues is shorter than it seems, or it will be taken faster. “You have to give it time. It’s a 2005, there are steps. We don’t pass high school without having done the second and the first. There are things to take into account such as the evolution of his physique, we should not burn him. He is starting to train with the group, it is already huge.” Said, for example, the president of Rennes, Nicolas Holveck, finally overtaken by the rapid rise of his colt, at the RMC microphone a year ago. In any case, the first exams were passed with some success. When will the diplomas be in hand?
By Florian Cadu