Kingsley Coman: A serial winner - from Paris Saint-Germain, via Juventus, to Bayern Munich
Kingsley Coman's decorated young career went full circle with his match-winner for Bayern Munich against boyhood club Paris Saint-Germain in the 2019/20 UEFA Champions League final.
The 24-year-old scored the decisive goal in the 59th minute at Lisbon's Estadio da Luz to put the seal on a continental treble for Bayern, whilst adding a quite remarkable 20th senior club trophy to his personal collection. The fact he claimed his first in PSG colours will be a real sore point for the French capital outfit.
Coman was born in the Paris suburbs, and was just eight years old when he joined the PSG youth academy in 2004. He made his professional debut - aged 16 years, eight months and four days - becoming the youngest player in the club's history to do so, and capped the 2012/13 season by winning the Ligue 1 title.
PSG defended their crown in 2013/14, and took top honours in the League Cup and Super Cup, but the sheer scale of investment from their Qatari backers had made the Parc des Princes fallow ground for budding talent. Having been restricted to just four senior appearances, totalling 55 minutes, Coman turned down PSG's offer of a professional contract in favour of a move to Juventus.
Coman featured in 20 games as Juve won the 2014/15 Serie A title, Coppa Italia and Supercup, albeit starting only nine. He played one league match at the beginning of the next season, before moving to Bayern, initially on loan.
"Kingsley Coman is one of the biggest talents in European football," then Bayern sporting director Matthias Sammer commented upon the PSG-reared youngster's arrival. "Hopefully we'll benefit from having him at the club."
Those aspirations were realised in double-quick time as Coman produced six goals and 12 assists in 35 appearances, helping Bayern sweep all before them in the 2015/16 Bundesliga and DFB Cup. It was the first of five consecutive Bundesliga title wins, and three domestic doubles for the fleet-footed winger, whose loan was made permanent in April 2017.
"Kingsley Coman is an important component for the future of our team, which is why we have decided to take up the option," said Bayern CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge.
"Kingsley is a player with huge promise. We're convinced he'll be able to do his bit in the coming years."
Watch: Kingsley Coman on why he joined Bayern Munich
Despite various injury setbacks - including recurring, and career-threatening, ankle ligament tears - Coman has delivered on his potential time and again.
His treble-clinching header in the Champions League final was his 33rd competitive goal in 161 appearances for Bayern, and propelled him into the annals as the fifth Frenchman to score in the tournament showpiece - and first to do it against French opposition.
Germany international Thilo Kehrer looked fired up for the game against his countrymen, but Coman was a constant thorn in the side of the former Schalke defender, and would surely have added to his 35 assists had he stayed on beyond the 68th minute.
"Perhaps he's finally stepped out of Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben's shadow this season," commented Bayern coach Hansi Flick, whose decision to recall the France international at the expense of the in-form Ivan Perisic proved a masterstroke. "Kingsley has incredible talent and he showed tonight he can also score goals."
Under contract at Bayern until summer 2023, FCB's sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic - a member of the 2000/01 Champions League-winning team - has tipped Coman to "become a true club great". A pretty safe bet, if ever there was one.
In five glittering years with the record champions, Coman has lifted 12 trophies. Since debuting for PSG, he has never gone a season without getting his hands on a league title. That's 2.5 pieces of silverware per campaign between the ages of 16 and 24, and with his peak years still to come.
It's fair to assume Bayern's acquisition of Leroy Sane from Manchester City means Coman will have to split his time between both sides of the touchline in 2020/21. Serge Gnabry, Alphonso Davies, Perisic - if the Inter Milan loanee sticks around - and young Oliver Batista Meier complete the club's riches in the attacking wide areas. Happily, the regal Parisian has never been one to shirk a challenge.
"When I came to FC Bayern, we had Franck Ribery, Arjen Robben, Douglas Costa, and me," Coman recalled. "And I was still a young player with legends like Ribery and Robben in front of me. So you can see that it’s not a problem for me. The club knows what it has in me."
And what a player that is. An elite-level winger. A game-changer. A serial winner. A king. All hail, Coman the Bavarian.
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