09 Aug 2023 at 08:49
PSV striker Johan Bakayoko feels freer on the field under trainer Peter Bosz than under his predecessor Ruud van Nistelrooij. The Belgian believes that his qualities will come into their own under the new coach.
Bakayoko played an important role on Tuesday in the 4-1 win over Sturm Graz in the third qualifying round of the Champions League. The twenty-year-old attacker was responsible for the early goals of Isaac Babadi and Luuk de Jong.
“I can make better use of my qualities,” Bakayoko said afterwards, quoted by ANP. “My qualities lie in making actions. The closer to the goal I play, the more dangerous I am.”
Bakayoko successfully brought eighteen-year-old talent Babadi into position in the fourth minute. “I have a special bond with him. I quickly became friends with him, it feels like my little brother. When he scored, it felt like I scored myself.”
Halfway through the first half, Bakayoko had his best moment of the game. The attacker was too fast for his direct opponent, reached the back line and then put the ball on De Jong’s head. “I still can’t believe how he did exactly that. My action was beautiful, his header even more beautiful.”
Peter Bosz was remarkably critical after the victory: ‘I don’t settle for mediocrity.’ Photo: Getty Images
Bakayoko understands Bosz’s criticism
Despite the big win, Bosz was critical of PSV’s game. Bakayoko appreciates the trainer’s comments. “If we want to become champions, we have to radiate that. The trainer was also positive, but there were things that could be better. It is clear what the trainer wants. He exudes confidence.”
Until January, Bakayoko was not yet a basic player at PSV. The winger is now one of the most important forces. He will not make a transfer this period, he promised. “Of course I will stay with PSV.” At the end of January, the people of Eindhoven rejected a bid from Paris Saint-Germain for Bakayoko.
PSV will play the return against Sturm Graz in Austria next Tuesday. The Bosz team will start the Eredivisie season on Saturday with a home match against FC Utrecht.
Eredivisie round 1
Friday 8:00 PM: FC Volendam-Vitesse Saturday 4:30 PM: PSV-FC Utrecht Saturday 6:45 PM: sc Heerenveen-RKC Waalwijk Saturday 8:00 PM: Ajax-Heracles Almelo Saturday 9:00 PM: PEC Zwolle-Sparta Sunday 12:15 PM: NEC-Excelsior Sunday 2:30 PM hours: Feyenoord-Fortuna Sittard Sunday 2.30 pm: AZ-Go Ahead Eagles Sunday 4.45 pm: Almere City-FC Twente
View all results and the program in the Champions League here