The 22-year-old Polish defender explains how he manages with the frustration that playing in the FIFA World Cup did not guarantee a first-team place for him.
Jan Bednarek most fond memory is that of June 28 at Volgograd Arena in the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
The defender scored his first goal ever with Poland, and to him, that would have meant first-team football in any club.
But it was not, since joining the English Premier League team Southampton, the youngster has only played in 15 league matches.
“You start to play in the Premier League, as I did last season, playing the last five games, and we stayed up,” he told the club’s official website.
“Then playing at the World Cup, your hopes are growing… and it happens again.”
“It happened again,” he adds.
“I didn’t play, I didn’t get any chances to get some minutes, and that was a tough moment for me.”
“I was not playing any games for my club and I was fighting for my place again. At one point, I had more minutes for the national team than for my club this season, so it was really tough,” he commented.
“It’s been a tough year, but it’s improved me,” he explains.
“You have hopes. I had the feeling I had done a good job and I expected to keep going, to improve as a player and give the best for the team, but it didn’t happen.”
“I was out of the team and out of the squad. For eight games in a row I didn’t have any minutes, so I was thinking about other options – to go on loan to another club where I would get some minutes,” Bednarek comments.
“But one day, a new manager came in and he decided to give me a chance straight away. I think you need a little bit of luck, but I had to be ready for that moment.”