5 things to know about Tiemoue Bakayoko

5) Not an easy child

The French midfielder was not an easy child to manage and look after. The honest Bakayoko himself admitted to the notorious nature of his during his childhood days. In an interview with Le Parisien, Bakayoko told that he used to sneak around 10pm along with his elder brother, Soualio, who plays in the second tier and play football with the older kids. Bakayoko also admitted that he had to go through several punishments for going out late at night from his father. His time at Clairefontaine academy was also troublesome as he was often forced to live in school due to misbehaviour.

 

4) No 14 on his back has significance

Bakayoko wears no 14 as a tribute to his neighbourhood in Paris. In the centre of the city, each neighbourhood is designated a number, and he was 14. Bakayoko claims that wearing no 14 gives him strength as it was in that very neighbourhood where Bakayoko learned the art of football. However, despite his love for his neighbourhood, it does seem weird especially when he dawns a Monaco shirt against PSG, Paris’ biggest domestic rivals. He hopes that wearing the no14 inspires the young kids.

 

3) Life under Jardim was not easy

Bakayoko’s first game for Monaco was also the first game for Leonardo Jardim at the helm of the club. Jardim was so exasperated by Bakayoko’s performance that he replaced the midfielder after just 30 minutes as the match ended in a 2-1 defeat. Last season, Bakayoko started working on his physicality and playing style, as things seemed on the up for the midfielder, who had joined from Rennes. Jardim’s decision to play Fabinho in the midfield was also crucial in Bakayoko’s development as the pair developed an exceptional bond, which got better with each passing game.

 

2) PSG remains his dream club

Chelsea look the likely destination for Bakayoko this summer, as Conte looks to replace Manchester bound Nemanja Matic. Nonetheless, Bakayoko remains keen on the idea of playing for PSG. It is only understandable that a young boy from Paris wants to play for his hometown club. Bakayoko had the chance to sign for PSG during his youth days; however, his father and brother decided against the move as he signed for Rennes. Still young, Bakayoko has plenty of time to represent his favourite club, but for now, he will look to help Chelsea retain their league title.

 

1) Ivorian Ancestry

Bakayoko made his international debut for France against Spain in March this year. Despite playing for Les Blues, Bakayoko has great affection for Ivory Coast. He openly proclaimed his love for Ivory Coast, saying that he is in love with two nations. His debut for France also meant that Ivory Coast had failed in their pursuit of recruiting Bakayoko to play for the African team. However, since Deschamps has yet to use Bakayoko in a competitive game, Bakayoko retains the chance of changing allegiance. Given his desire to play in the World Cup’18, it could still be possible that Bakayoko plays for Ivory Coast.