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HypoVereinsbank hails ‘milestone’ with Alaba

David Alaba knows very well that being a star footballer includes press conferences, interviews, sponsor commitments and a life in the spotlight, but the down-to-earth midfielder is much more at home showing off his quality on the field. Nevertheless, the young Austrian is no greenhorn away from the game, as he proved with a highly professional appearance at the Säbener Strasse media centre on Wednesday lunchtime, presenting him as the new face of Bayern Premium Partner HypoVereinsbank.

David’s obvious charm, composure and typically Viennese irony make him a genuinely entertaining turn. HypoVereinsbank Marketing Director Dirk Huefnagels was visibly proud to have Alaba on board for his latest campaign: “He's young, exceptionally talented and he’s witty, a great character," said Huefnagels, “it's a milestone for us."

A TV commercial shot for the David Alaba campaign at Eisbach Studios in Munich was unveiled on Wednesday (for more information, visit hvb.de/alaba (German language)). The shoot took a full day, “and we had hours of fun," said the Austrian, although he is not contemplating a switch to acting at this stage: “I think I'll stick with football."

Sweden in awe of Alaba

That's good for Bayern, and good for the Austrian national team, whose dream of reaching the World Cup in Brazil is well and truly alive – thanks to Alaba, who crashed home the crucial late winner in Tuesday evening’s 1–0 victory over Ireland. The men from the Alps have their fate in their own hands in the last two qualifying fixtures, and next opponents Sweden are already fearful of Bayern's dynamic utility man.

“He exudes desire, but especially belief that he can lead this otherwise average Austrian team to victory in Sweden," Stockholm newspaper Expressen warned. David is up to five goals in World Cup qualifying so far, prompting Aftonbladet to declare the 21-year-old a “Sweden killer."

Typically, Alaba refuses to rise to the bait. “I'm trying to stay relaxed," he said on Wednesday, although coming down from a high like Tuesday’s is hardly easy. “The crowd was really up for it," he reported, “the dream is alive. We have two finals ahead of us."

Fit and ready for FCB duty

Germany could yet give Austria a helping hand, as Thomas Müller & Co visit Sweden on the final matchday, so David will be having a word with his Bayern team-mates. “Obviously we're rooting for the Germans, but I reckon they'd also like to see us in Brazil," he said with a wink. However, before the qualifying showdowns in October, the focus turns back to club football.

Alaba is aiming to help Bayern to a third home victory of the season when Hannover visit Munich on Saturday. “I'm feeling good and I've come back here fit and healthy," he reported. David is unconcerned by the fact Munich are currently “only" second in the table behind Dortmund: “We're staying calm and not looking at the other teams."