Michniewicz surprises. He is preparing a new role for Krychowiak. Will it work out?
Izabela Koprowiak (Onet Sports Review): You’ve already visited many clubs, but haven’t played a single match in the Polish league. You didn’t have to meet this one, because he left for France at the age of 16. For a week you have been training with Legia as a guest, seeing the team from our yard up close for the first time. What impressions?
Grzegorz Krychowiak (midfielder of the Polish national team): First of all, I can see fantastic working conditions. There is everything here to achieve good results: a nice stadium, great fans, a training center that made a great impression on me, young people who will start to play an important role at some point, and the quality of players with whom I can train. The organization is really great, but in the end it’s all in the hands of the trainer. Depends on how he can use it.
So what kind of coach is Legia’s coach Kosta Runjaić?
Solid, keeps his finger on the pulse and keeps the team in check. For now, it is difficult for me to draw far-reaching conclusions, but you can see that he has a lot of experience.
What are the chances of him being your coach in the future?
Hard to say. The experience of this year has made me even more convinced that planning does not make sense. In February, the war in Ukraine started, I changed club for the first time, then for the second time, in the meantime I had to come to Russia. Today I know that I am on loan until June to Al-Shabab, after that time I will return to Krasnodar again.
When we spoke at the end of August, you said that after the last game on October 15th, you would go to the tournament, which is the Arab version of the Champions League.
And it will take place, but later than planned. I thought it would start after a few days off, but it turned out that we had three weeks to rest and only now the tournament in Abu Dhabi will start. So I had to change my program. First, I took these four or five days off, cleaned my head. After that time, I realized that if I want to go to the World Cup, I have to start training somewhere. Earlier, I talked to Jacek Zieliński about the transfer, so I already had the number for him. I called and just asked if it was possible for me to train with the Legia team for two weeks. He agreed immediately. Coach Michniewicz was very pleased with that, my club did not make any obstacles. They understood that I had to prepare for the championship. I came, I train here until Saturday. Then I return to Saudi Arabia, there I play one match with my team, after which I come to the national team camp.
Is it enough to properly prepare for the World Cup?
I am in contact with the coaches of the staff. They come to me so that I can devote the two Saturdays I spend in Poland to activities that support me in the rhythm of the match. We want 100 percent replace the effort I put into each meeting. Last Saturday, I had the feeling that it was successful. I run an average of 11 km during the match, this is also the distance I covered during training. I also did the same sprints as usual. The numbers matched. I feel that it is producing good results. Therefore, I do not think the interruption is a problem for me.
When Czesław Michniewicz arrived in October, what topic did you talk about the longest?
We talked for two hours, it couldn’t be longer because I had to go to the game. There were many topics. One of them is the idea that I should act as a defender. We talked about it because problems do not exist only in the middle of aid. So there is an option for me to be a stopwatch.
What do you think about such an idea?
I would probably have to change the number, but I don’t mind. I know that at some point it awaits me anyway, because it will be time to perform lower. It’s a normal thing, I’ve played a few times as a center-back. The last time in June at a camp in Spain. I felt very good in this role, if necessary, I will be ready.
When you saw the list of 47 names that Czesław Michniewicz placed in the broad team for the World Cup, which of them surprised you the most?
None of them surprised me, although I must also honestly admit that I did not analyze this list too much. I was in India then.
The situation in the middle of the field does not bother you?
There are quite a few of us. That is why the selector included as many as 47 players on his list, to finally take away 26 who play present the best form. I know that Jacek Góralski is injured. This is another player to drop out after Cuba Modera, but I am convinced that among the 47 players there will be three midfielders who will be ready to play.
Do you feel there is so little time left before the World Cup starts?
At all. I don’t realize that the World Cup is three weeks away. This World Cup is completely different than any previous one. It is difficult to predict whether the fact that the teams will only train a few times before the tournament is a good or a bad solution. Nobody knows the answer to this question.
As well as whether Mr. and Karol Świderski will be in shape after a few weeks without playing.
We’ll see. I am doing my best to be ready. I feel very well prepared physically, it’s not that I haven’t been playing for a month or two. I must admit that after the preparatory period and the eight games I played, those five days off did me very well. Thanks to them, return to intensive work is more effective. And it is really intense: this match day, which we reflected on Saturday, was so strong that at one point the coach stopped me, he said it was enough. However, I insisted that it was exactly as in the match.
When do you find time for business in all of this? You’ve recently been involved in another project – this time it’s the Linkball app.
I feel like it’s a great idea. It will help to show the talents of young players more widely.
Some people watch videos with dogs or cats on Instagram, and this will be an application that will allow you to watch young players presenting their skills. Users will be able to add videos with their matches, games on Linkball, and coaches, scouts will get the opportunity to spot them. This is really important, especially for boys from small towns. Recently, while I was at dinner, a man came up to me and showed me a video of the plays of a young player. He said the boy had great talent, but I didn’t know how to help him.
I could see he is capable, he has quality, but what could I do? To call Jacek Zieliński from Legia or to France? It does not work like that. There are a lot of such stories, a lot of talented kids are wasted because there is nowhere to see them. The Linkball application will make it easier, thanks to it they will be able to show their quality. It will also be easier for clubs, they will be able to spot and look for talented youth. I catch myself that the more I talk and think about this application, the more I am convinced that it is a really cool thing. It costs nothing and can really help. I like the idea, but I believed even more in the people who came to me with this proposal – and that’s even more important than the idea.
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