Bayern Munich could have been “one size too big” for Alphonso Davies, admits Canada legend Paul Stalteri, but the 19-year-old has shown that his “enormous” potential can handle such a step up in class.
The highly-rated youngster agreed what was then a record transfer for MLS back in the summer of 2018 when Bayern swooped in to sign him from the Vancouver Whitecaps.
Davies was very much viewed as one for the future at that stage, but he has quickly set about making a positive impact on a senior stage at the Allianz Arena.
Having been turned into a buccaneering left-back, the talented teenager has already been handed a contract extension through to 2025.
Big things are expected of him in the present and future, with Stalteri delighted to see the brightest star in Canadian football proving himself on the grandest of European stages.
The former Werder Bremen and Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder told SportBild of Davies: “I am very relieved that things are going so well for him at Bayern.
“When he moved from Vancouver to Munich last January, I was happy. But I also had doubts. My fear was that Alphonso would not get enough game time at Bayern. That the club could be one size too big for him.
“But I was certain in one point: Germany is the best country for Alphonso's career. German soccer is just the thing for top talents from Canada. It fits perfectly because we Canadians have a similar mentality to the Germans: hard work and discipline are important points. And they are crucial for the human development of young players.”
Davies’ versatility and willingness to learn have helped him to settle quickly at Bayern, with Stalteri quick to hail those qualities.
He added: “His huge advantage is his super-toned body, his dynamism and his smooth movements. 'Phonzy' not only runs incredibly fast, but also a hell of a lot. He is on the go non-stop.
“With his outstanding ball control, he can always go one on one. Even as a boy he was extremely dangerous in front of the opposing goal. In Canada, he was mostly on the left wing going forward. But he could also play in the number nine position.
“The defensive position he now has at Bayern was not his role in the past. He is one of the most dangerous players in Canada.
“The boy has a really good heart. He loves jokes on social networks. He jokes off the pitch, but as soon as he gets on the pitch he is totally serious and a thousand per cent committed. He doesn't do anything stupid.
“His development is enormous, his potential huge. He has all the qualities and is well on the way to a great career.”