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200 Bundesliga games

Impressive milestone for Alaba

At the tender age of 16, David Alaba left his homeland and moved to Munich to follow his dream of becoming a professional footballer. It was not an easy start, with a lot of hard work and perseverance but it all paid off in the end. Coming through the youth teams, the defensive all-rounder eventually made it into the first team at the record champions, where he has since become a permanent fixture.

Last Saturday, Alaba reached yet another impressive milestone as he played his 200th Bundesliga game in the win over Schalke. A truly remarkable landmark, and all at just the age of 25. It makes Alaba the youngest non-German to reach the double hundred. “Never in my wildest dreams did I think this would happen when I made by debut. I’m unbelievably proud. It’s a real honour for me to play so many games for this club,” the double centurion had said after the game.

The left-footed Austrian has made 183 appearances in the German top flight for Bayern, plus 17 games while on a six-month loan at Hoffenheim in 2011. Those games have seen him find the back of the net 17 times (2 for TSG), as well as provide 19 assists. He could not add to that total in his landmark game against Schalke, but he was still one of the best FCB players on the pitch.

10 February is therefore a day Alaba will never forget, and not just because of last weekend. On that day exactly eight years ago, the 17-year-old Alaba made his first-team debut when Louis van Gaal brought him on for Anatoliy Tymoshchuk in the DFB Cup against Greuther Fürth. Three weeks later he made his bow in the Bundesliga.

Plenty has happened since then: Six league titles, four DFB Cups and a Champions League triumph are all on the Vienna native’s CV. Even with 200 Bundesliga appearances under his belt now, the boy who left his home almost a decade ago is not done yet.

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