Alphonso Davies is relishing the prospect of playing first-team football for Bayern Munich, and says he has been welcomed with open arms by Germany's record champions.
Davies - who signed a five-year deal with Bayern back in July 2018 after breaking onto the professional scene with MLS outfit Vancouver Whitecaps - spent a month training alongside his new teammates prior to the Bundesliga's annual winter break, but was ineligible to play for the club until the transfer window reopened on 1 January 2019.
After returning to his native Edmonton over Christmas, the 18-year-old Canada international is now itching to get back to Munich and show the Bundesliga what he is capable of.
"Now I'm able to play games," Davies said, via The Edmonton Sun, before boarding a flight to Munich on Wednesday, 2 January. "We go to a warm weather training camp in Qatar from the fourth to the 10th. Then we have a match in Hoffenheim. Going to Munich beforehand to see how it is and now going back to hopefully participate in games is just wonderful."
"The team has reacted positively to me"
That pre-Christmas period of acclimatisation is what Davies believes will make his transition from MLS to the Bundesliga, from North America to Europe, all the smoother. He even scored a few goals whilst dipping his toes on the training pitches at Bayern's Säbener Straße headquarters for the first time.
"When I was training with the team, some of the players told me I was there because I'm good and not to be afraid to show my ability," he explained. "We had some inter-squad small-sided games and I scored some goals. Being able to score some goals boosted my confidence a lot more.
"The team has reacted positively to me. When I arrived at the locker-room, they all welcomed me and they're all excited for me to be there. It was pretty exciting for me to meet all the players for the first time. To watch someone on TV and to then sit with them in the locker-room and talk with them was something that I won’t forget."
"Ich heiße Phonzie"
Davies also revealed that he is already getting to grips with the German language, and has his own set of wheels to help him get from A to B in Munich.
"It's going pretty good, I guess," he admitted. "I'm not fluent or anything like that, but I'm learning. I’m just trying to settle in and figure out where to go, how to get to training and home. It's about 10 minutes away. I'm just so excited."
Davies could make his Bundesliga debut as early as 18 January when Bayern resume their title defence away to Hoffenheim, trailing leaders Borussia Dortmund by six points at the halfway stage.