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Meet The Parents Behind Rising Germay Star Jamal Musiala

Meet The Parents Behind Rising Germay Star Jamal Musiala

Jamal Musiala is being widely revered as the ‘next big thing’ in German football. He proved the reason behind the hype around him with two brilliant performances for Bayern Munich against Real Madrid in the UEFA Champions League semi-final. Despite coming up short, Musiala tormented Los Blancos with his unpredictable style and brilliant dribbling ability.

The 21-year-old still has a long career ahead of him and is already being labeled a potential future Ballon d’Or winner by Bayern Munich fans. Despite all his popularity, Musiala has kept himself very humble and focused on progressing his career than letting arrogance creep in. A major credit for that goes to his upbringing.

Musiala has a fascinating lineage and was born to a British-Nigerian father Daniel Richard and German mother with Polish roots Carolin.

His father, better known as ‘Rich’, is actually a former professional footballer who used to play at the highest division in Nigeria. Meanwhile, his mother is a completely different character.

Carolin is a highly educated woman and it was due to her education that the family moved from Germany to England when Jamal was only seven.

Carolin’s thirst for knowledge enabled her to enrol at the University of Southampton to get a graduate degree in social science. After that, she obtained a master’s degree in sociology from the Goethe University in Frankfurt.

Carolin started working as a socialist in England after getting her degrees. But amid Jamal’s remarkable rise in recent years, she’s had to juggle her professional work and personal duties. She moved with her son when he made the jump to Bayern Munich in 2019 and was actively involved in helping his progress.

Musiala revealed in a 2021 interview that it was Carolin who drove him to training everyday, remarking: “So far I’ve been very happy that my mum has been so nice as to drive me to training. I am infinitely grateful to my parents. They’ve always supported me in everything and literally brought me all the way to Säbener Straße. I’m currently working towards getting my driving licence and I’m really looking forward to driving myself soon.”

With that being said, soon after that, Musiala got his license done in 2021 itself to take the burden away from his mother and let her mind to her own work.

But Jamal is blessed to not only have a mother so passionate about his development, but also an ex-footballer in his father who has been his biggest motivational factor.

Jamal started his football career at the age of five when he was enrolled into the youth academy of TSV Lehnerz.

He actually started playing football when he was only three because of his father’s obsession with the sport, as he remarked in an interview with Bayern: “He was a good footballer himself, even if not at professional level. I started playing football when I was three, in front of the house with my father. We’d pass the ball back and forth, I’d have to dribble it out, or he’d go in goal. When I was four, I went to my first club, where I played with kids who were a year older.”

And it was Richard who was Jamal’s biggest supporter and motivational factor during his first years training in a football academy.  

The 21-year-old’s former coach at TSV Lehnerz, Branko Milenkovski, spoke about how crazy Rich could be in training sessions. He told Goal:: Rich was totally crazy about football. He was always running up and down the line to cheer Jamal on. After most games, he was sweating more than his son! Jamal always wanted to cheer. It was clear to him that if a goal was scored, he would cheer. No matter which team scored the goal.

“I can still remember Rich’s typical reaction when Jamal celebrated with the opponent. First he threw his hands up in horror and then laughed his head off.”

But once the Musiala family moved to England in 2010, things changed drastically for the young aspiring footballer.

Carolin and Rich made the brave decision to directly drive into Southampton’s club offices and there they met Jazz Bhatti, who worked for the club’s foundation and helped enroll him into their academy.

Rich, however, was adamant that Musiala could easily punch above his weight and play with the ‘older boys’ when he was put into the under-7s team.

Rosh Bhatti, Jazz’s brother and Jamal’s former coach, noted: “Rich kept saying what a special talent his son was and that he could go far if he could be placed in a big club’s junior section. A lot of people would have laughed at such a confident statement. I mean, what father wouldn’t say something like that about his son? But Rich was right.”

Soon after this statement, Jamal scored six goals in 10 minutes in an under-7s match where a member of the Saints’ scouting department was present. He started training with players much older than him.

However, Chelsea’s academy scouts soon found notice of him and the prospect of seeing their child play for a Premier League winner was too good to reject for the Musiala family.

Jamal would go onto stay in Chelsea for eight years from 2011-2019. But questions around the Blues’ hesitation at regularly playing their youth academy products crept doubts into the minds of Musiala’s parents.

And then Bayern came with an attractive offer in 2019, which included gifts for the family ads. Alexander Mojs, the Bayern under-17 coach, played a key role in winning over the family’s confidence and recalled it: “I wanted to give Jamal’s little sister and brother something in particular, as the family in Germany has supported Bayern Munich. We then stayed in touch.

“At our reunion after Jamal’s transfer, his mother told me that his sister Latisha always wore the Bayern cap I had given her at Warwick in 2016. And that Jamal’s father had the Bayern pendant in his lanyard from then on. The family has always had a good feeling about Bayern Munich ever since.”

Hence, Jamal decided to move back to Germany in 2019 with his mother accompanying him. Richard, meanwhile, decided to stay in England and still mostly stays in the country itself.

Interestingly, due to his parents’ lineage and spending so many years in England, Musiala had the chance to represent Germany, England or even Nigeria at the international level. Speaking on why he chose his mother’s country, recalled: “I have a heart for Germany and a heart for England. Both hearts will keep beating. In the end I just listened to my feeling that it was the right decision to play for Germany, the land I was born in.”

While Rich couldn’t ever excel in football at the international level and Carolin wasn’t even involved in it, they both strived a concrete plan to make their son the superstar he is today. The two might like to stay in the shadows and live a private life together as a strong couple, yet their effort and hard work mean the duo deserve as much credit in Musiala’s meteoric rise as the player himself.