Robert Lewandowski continues to show there’s plenty left in the tank as he put Barcelona to the sword in the Champions League.
The Bayern Munich striker, 33, is considered to be one of the best in the world and it was while watching Arsenal that inspired him to aim for the dizzying heights he currently finds himself.
Arsenal don’t inspire much in anyone these days, but once upon a time they were the one of the best sides in Europe and in Thierry Henry, had the best striker in the land.
“Growing up my dream was to play in the big stadiums with 80,000 fans, but when I was young in Poland, we didn’t have any top players,” he explained in 2019.
“I knew I couldn’t just think about my country – I had to think bigger. I looked at the best player in the world and thought, ‘Why can a player from Poland not be one of the best in the world?’
“When I was six, I remember Roberto Baggio at the 1994 World Cup. When I was between 10 and 14, Alessandro Del Piero was the best player for me. Then my idol was Thierry Henry. He was amazing – it wasn’t just how he scored the goals but what he did for the team.”
Henry is considered by many to be the Premier League’s greatest ever player and is Arsenal’s top scoring player with 228 goals in all competitions.
He joined the club in 1999 and was part of the 2004 title winners that didn’t lose all season, then left for Barcelona in 2007 to play in Pep Guardiola’s all-conquering side.
“When he was at Arsenal, I remember how easily he scored goals from different situations,” Lewandowski continued.
“He could score from the left side into the far corner with his right foot. It was so easy for him – I wanted to score a lot of goals too and I could learn from him.
“I wanted to be the same player like that, but to be Robert Lewandowski. I could take some aspects from one or two of the players and be like my idol.
“I remember when I met Henry, I was like, ‘Wow, I met my childhood idol’. Now he wants my jersey and I think, ‘Amazing’. I believe that dreams come true.”
Lewandowski has scored 283 Bundesliga goals for Borussia Dortmund and then Bayern where he has been since 2014. His double against Barcelona in the Champions League saw him find the back of the net for the 18th successive game.
He scored 41 league goals last season and, since the 2019/20 season, Lewandowski leads the way in Europe’s top five leagues for goals scored.
Just look at those names he leaves trailing in his wake.
Most goals in all competition since 2019/20
Roberto Lewandowski: 112
Kylian Mbappe (PSG): 76
Cristiano Ronaldo (Man United): 76
Erling Haaland (Borussia Dortmund): 73
Lionel Messi (PSG): 69
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