Borussia Mönchengladbach forward Marcus Thuram says he owes a lot to his father, Lilian. - © getty images
Borussia Mönchengladbach forward Marcus Thuram says he owes a lot to his father, Lilian. - © getty images

Borussia Mönchengladbach's Marcus Thuram credits World Cup-winning father's influence on career

New Borussia Mönchengladbach striker Marcus Thuram has revealed how the advice of his FIFA World Cup-winning father has helped make him into a better player.

A World Cup and UEFA Euro 2000 champion with France, a UEFA Cup conqueror with Parma and three-time Serie A winner with Juventus, Lillian Thuram ranks as one of the finest right-backs in history.

Marcus hadn't long started walking when his Dad became a world champion and was still only 10 by the time of his retirement, but the soccer gene proved inborn.

Thuram Jnr. made his professional debut at the age of 17 and, after racking up 115 competitive appearances in five years with French clubs Sochaux and Guingamp, recently joined Gladbach on a four-year deal.

The 21-year-old says his decorated father has had a huge influence on his still young career.

"My Dad made me into a better person and player," explained Marcus, who arrives at Borussia-Park on the back of a nine-goal season in Ligue 1 with Guingamp. "It was my dad who told me to run away from the bling-bling!"

Despite being a right-back by trade, Lilian was famed for his rapier-like forays into opposition territory. His brace in the 1998 World Cup semi-final against Croatia is one of the enduring images of a storied career for club and country, and it's no surprise that Marcus has inherited his father's forward-thinking tendencies.

France, Parma and Juventus legend Lilian Thuram could attack as well as he could defend. - imago

"I'm a quick player who likes to take on players and combine with teammates," the France U21 international said, having led the likes of Lionel Messi and Neymar for most successful dribble attempts across Europe's top five leagues in the early part of last season.

"I love to play, I love football, but most of all I love to attack, attack, attack!"

It's one of the main reasons Thuram chose Gladbach over the "bling-bling" of elsewhere. New coach Marco Rose previously worked under Jürgen Klopp and turned many a head with his refreshing brand of progressive modern football during Red Bull Salzburg's run to the 2017/18 UEFA Europa League semi-finals.

Thuram has only been at the club a matter of days, but is in no doubt he has made the right choice in linking up with Rose at Gladbach.

"He's a young coach, who invests a lot in young players," Thuram said of the coveted 42-year-old tactician. "He knows what he wants and he knows so much about football.

"I want to play a lot, develop and enjoy my time in Gladbach. It's exactly the right club for me!"