Michy Batshuayi is a bit more serious these days, or so he claims. Not on social media of course. And certainly not when it comes to his nails.
But whereas he had a bit of reputation as a wild-child teenager back in Belgium, he now knows when to turn that side of his personality off.
“When I was young, it’s true that I had some problems of discipline ... but what young person doesn’t? Today, I’m 26 years old, I can channel myself and I work at training and in the game. I’m playful, but I choose my moments: at 0-0 I’m going to be serious, at 2 or 3-0 I’m going to play it up. Being cool is part of my personality.
“But it’s true: the pressure of football imposes the need to perform and win. The competition is raging, and seriousness is needed.”
But when it comes to the football itself, he’s all serious business. He’s keeping his head down, working hard, and making the most of his opportunities when they come, be that at club level or with the national team. He has to contend with the likes of Tammy Abraham, Olivier Giroud, and Romelu Lukaku, and he pushes them to perform better through friendly competition.
“Frankly, I do not read all these [comments], I stay in my football bubble, I watch matches, I keep working and I just hope to be rewarded for my work. [...] We all push each other, we are driven by healthy competition to be better.”
Many are telling Michy that he needs to leave Chelsea to find more minutes elsewhere. He himself has done that before of course, but for right now, he’s loving life at the club where he’s finally truly feeling at home.
“I have never been a full-fledged starter, but Chelsea is my club, that’s where I feel at home. It’s a club I love deeply!”
-Michy Batshuayi; source: RTBF via Google Translate
Batshuayi has emerged as the clear backup at Chelsea to Tammy Abraham, who’s been on fire to start the season. With Olivier Giroud likely to depart in January, Michy’s claim for those rotational minutes will only solidify. His goalscoring record is quite impressive despite limited appearances, and that’s certainly a fantastic option to have in reserve. Hopefully he can continue feeling happy and loved at the Bridge for a long while longer.
P.S.: In a rather amusing moment on Saturday, Dedryck Boyata somehow ended up playing the entire first half of Belgium’s Euro 2020 qualifier against Russia in Michy Batshuayi’s No.23 shirt. Boyata put the correct shirt on at half-time (No.4), while the real Batshuayi eventually made an appearance as well, as a late substitute for Lukaku in the 4-1 win. Incidentally, all four goals and all four assists went to ex-Chelsea players (Eden with 2g+1a, Thorgan with 1g, Lukaku with 1g+1a, and De Bruyne with 2 assists).