It’s Choupo season at Sport Bild! In a feature interview, the German-Cameroon forward talked freely about his transfer history, experiences at PSG and Bayern, and the experience of being
Sport Bild reminded Choupo-Moting that no club has ever paid a transfer fee for him. The only money that has ever exchanged hands between clubs was a €50,000 loan fee when Choupo transferred from Hamburger SV to Nürnberg. “Do people look askance at [him] in the Bayern locker room because of that,” Sport Bild asked.
“That has never been an issue in the locker room,” Choupo-Moting replied. “Until now I thought I never costed a cent. I had totally forgotten about the €50,000. But: duly noted! And you can look at it this way: I’m just an exemplary player and always fulfill my contracts (laughing).”
Choupo-Moting briefly described how he ended up signing for Bayern Munich on a free transfer instead of renewing with PSG. Was Hasan Salihamidzic perhaps reading Bavarian Football Works at the crack of dawn in Germany that fateful day? We may never know.
Choupo-Moting said, “Paris wanted to extend me. I was happy there. But I always had an eye on Germany and also whether there might be a place for me at the top clubs.”
“Then my agent had contact with Bayern. After Hasan Salihamidzic got in touch with me and I spoke with Hansi Flick, it was clear: that’s what I want to do!” he said. “It’s a massive honor to play for the biggest club in Germany as a Hamburg kid. München is a super city. It was a hugely important step in career terms.”
The biggest difference between the locker rooms at Bayern and PSG is the lingua franca, which was not, curiously, French in France: “In Paris I mostly spoke Spanish with the guys. That’s probably the biggest difference,” Choupo-Moting said. “At Bayern, I’m actually already completely integrated after such a short time.”
Choupo-Moting became a good friend of Neymar’s during his time in Paris, describing him as a “super guy.” He described the camraderie at PSG as “Like at a totally normal profession, between colleagues who have a good relationship. Many players in Paris have children,” he said. “When we celebrated our son’s birthday, almost the whole team came. For example, Edinson Cavani or even Mbappé, who doesn’t have any kids.”
Choupo-Moting is a noted fan of street culture and fashion, something that comes through in his obvious friendship with teammate Jerome Boateng. Choupo-Moting also revealed he is an avid skateboarder: “I love skateboarding; my son does, too. Sometimes, in Paris I came to training by skateboard. A few people may have grinned, but then a lot of other players tried it out and thought it was totally cool.”
He admitted he may skate to Säbener Strasse, but “Actually, though, I’d rather check out the surfers on the Eisbach in the Englischer Garten first — as soon as that’s allowed again with respect to the coronavirus rules,” he added.
Sport Bild asked Choupo-Moting to compare the incomparable: his former teammates Neymar and Mbappé and current teammate Robert Lewandowski. Choupo-Moting said:
“They’re three different types of player. In terms of killer instinct, Lewandowski is currently number 1. How often he scores is crazy. That’s not luck, but skill. He is deservedly Europe’s Footballer of the Year. I can also pick up this or that from him: how he controls the ball and shoots them in. He had a good relationship here right away.”
At Bayern, even though he is not a starter, Choupo-Moting is happy with his place: “One thing is clear,” he said, “the best players who are should play the most. Robert is my teammate, and we want to be successful together. Cavani in Paris was also my friend and not only my competitor.”
Choupo-Moting also briefly touched on his friend Jerome Boateng’s situation in light of Bild’s claim that Bayern does not intend to offer him a new contract. Choupo-Moting is not convinced that is really the case. “I think that he’s staying totally relaxed,” he said. “Anything’s possible in soccer. Let’s wait and see what happens at the end of the season. In Paris, my contract expired and in the end they wanted to keep me after all. Jerome is a player who can help any team. As long as he performs on the pitch, you shouldn’t look at his age.”
Sport Bild also asked whether he could imagine Thomas Tuchel one day coaching Bayern Munich. Choupo-Moting agrees it is possible, “In Hansi Flick we have a coach who is doing a super job! But I think that Thomas Tuchel also has the potential to coach many of the top clubs in the world. He is very competent, can take a team to the next level. I got along with him well — as a person and as a coach.”