Mathys Tel has made a record-breaking start to his Bayern Munich career. - © Imago
Mathys Tel has made a record-breaking start to his Bayern Munich career. - © Imago

Mathys Tel: Who is Bayern Munich's record-breaking teenager?


Not even Robert Lewandowski has a better Bundesliga minutes-per-goal ratio than Mathys Tel. has the scoop on the Bayern Munich teenager who's just signed a new long-term deal till 2029...

Stats correct as of 6 March 2024

Mathys Tel

Age: 18 (born 27 April 2005)
Club: Bayern Munich
Position: Forward
Country: France (six caps/five goals for the U19s)

Key Stats

From Sarcelles in the Paris suburbs, Tel played as a youngster for local clubs Villiers Le Bel, Paris FC, ASJ Aubervilliers and Montrouge FC as well as spending time at the famous Clairefontaine academy. A move west to Brittany then followed, and at the age of 15 he signed for Rennes in 2020. The flexible right-footed player was a centre-back when the switch was agreed, but he had begun moving further up the pitch by the time he arrived at his new club. His progress from there was rapid. In August 2021, Tel became the youngest player ever to line out for Rennes when he came on for the final five minutes of their 1-1 draw at Brest. The 6'0" forward was just 16 years, three months and 19 days old when he made his competitive debut, and in total the teenager featured 10 times from the bench across all competitions in the 2021/22 campaign.

Tel is already a high achiever at international level too. He has played for the France U21 team but in summer 2022 he led the France U17 side to victory at the European Championship in Israel. The now Bayern man got three goals and an assist in the group stage before scoring in penalty shootout wins over Germany and Portugal. He lifted the trophy as captain following a 2-1 success against the Netherlands in the final on 1 June.

On 31 August 2022, Tel became Bayern's youngest-ever goalscorer when - at 17 years and 126 days old - he netted in his side's 5-0 DFB Cup triumph against Viktoria Cologne, beating the club's previous record holder, Jamal Musiala (17 years, 205 days). He followed that by making his full Bundesliga debut against VfB Stuttgart on 10 September, marking the occasion with his maiden top-flight goal. The Frenchman started 2023/24 with five strikes in the first eight games of the season, and his Bundesliga tally now stands at nine in 42 appearances. He also hit his first UEFA Champions League goals against Manchester United and Copenhagen, with both strikes proving to be match-winners.

Plays a bit like: Kylian Mbappé

Any particularly good young French attacking talent is bound to be compared to Mbappé, and Tel justifiably falls into that bracket. He is similar both in terms of his career path - as an exciting youngster who everyone was talking about before they turned 17 - and in style. Quick and a good dribbler, Tel admitted when he signed his first pro contract that he still needed to work out what position suits him best. That's something many of his coaches have pondered too, but one of Tel's key strengths is his ability to adapt to any role he's asked to play.

He was thrown on to the wing in a 4-3-3 system for his debut, a position Mbappé has excelled in for club and country. The latest talent to join the sizeable French contingent at Bayern has played across the front line and in central midfield over the years, and like Mbappé he has shown he is capable of thriving in a more central role too. The teenager featured as a centre forward in a 4-3-3 formation during France's triumphant European U17 Championship campaign.

Watch: All Mathys Tel's Bundesliga goals so far

Did you know? 

With nine goals to show for 42 Bundesliga appearances, totalling 876 minutes, Tel boasts one of the best minutes-per-goal ratio in Bundesliga history (97.3). Paco Alcácer (75.2), Erling Haaland (88.9), Joel Pohjanpalo (89.6) and Lewandowski (99.6) complete the top five. 

What they're saying

"You can see that he wants to score goals - that's a great quality. Thinking back to when Arjen Robben was playing, we used to think he should have been looking for the pass - but he was so focused on scoring and he scored a lot. Mathys should keep doing his thing: firing shots in on goal. He's a superb finisher." - Bayern teammate Thomas Müller

"He's only 18 and is making the most of it at the moment. He's always positive, always has a smile on his face and has great finishing in training and in matches." - Bayern head coach Thomas Tuchel

"He's an important foundation for the future of this team. With him, we already have the next Bayern generation in our squad. Mathys arrived in Munich as a young player and, at the age of 18, has already gained a lot of important experience at the top level. He will lay down many markers, here at Bayern." - Bayern board member for sport Max Eberl

"He's a very young, talented player who can play different positions… he's very quick, strong with his body. He's good at defending the ball with his back towards the opponent's goal… I have the vision that he could score 40 goals [in a season like Robert Lewandowski] one day in the future." - former Bayern head coach Julian Nagelsmann on the club's plans to mould Tel into a world-class forward