It was always going to be a case of when not if Alphonso Davies would score his first Bundesliga goal, even if the 18-year-old’s dispatch method in the 6-0 win over Mainz took Bayern Munich teammate Niklas Süle by surprise.
Reacting quickest to a Robert Lewandowski effort that Mainz goalkeeper Florian Müller could only parry, Davies sent a first-time volley into the roof of the net. Not only was it his first attempt on goal in the Bundesliga, but it also came via what Süle describes as the Canadian’s "weaker" foot.
"I always thought he only used his right foot for standing on," the Bayern defender joked of the naturally left-sided Davies. "He didn’t just score a nice goal, though. He fought for the ball and covered a lot of ground. It was a ballsy performance - I told him so."
On as a second-half substitute for left-back David Alaba, Davies had only been on the pitch for 12 minutes when he struck his milestone goal, on only his fifth appearance in Germany’s top flight at that. In doing so, the former Vancouver Whitecaps winger became Bayern’s first player born in the 2000s to score in the Bundesliga, as well as the club’s youngest in almost 20 years.
"Alphonso’s a real diamond," said Bayern sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic afterwards. "He’s incredibly dynamic. I think he might be the fastest player in the Bundesliga, but we’ll have to measure that one (smiles). He certainly has qualities you scarcely see, and can play wherever the coach wants him to. He’s the future for sure, but he has also shown he has a role to play in the here and now."
As encouraging as Davies’ performances in his short time at Bayern have been - 'Kid Canada' has accumulated 56 minutes of Bundesliga football since moving to Munich in January - head coach Niko Kovac has always been keen to stress that Canada’s youngest ever debutant and goalscorer is very much a work in progress, despite including him his matchday squad for all but one of the Bavarians’ nine top-tier assignments in 2019.
"It isn’t always easy to make an impact right away as a young player at Bayern Munich," Kovac explained. "Look at Renato Sanches, he is a Portugal national team player and he is not playing a lot either - but Phonzie is a very good player. He has a lot of developmental potential, and he’s on the right path."