Robert Lewandowski motivated by leadership challenge at Barcelona

Barcelona presented star summer signing Robert Lewandowski on to Camp Nou on Friday afternoon, exactly a year to the day after the club announced that Lionel Messi would be leaving.

The Polish striker arrives after eight remarkably successful seasons at Bayern Munich, securing a Champions League title  and a Bundesliga title in each season.

Speaking in his press conference, Lewandowski was clear that his impact was to go far beyond just scoring goals.

“It’s a challenge for me. To show my best abilities on the pitch in the first matches of the season and be able to push the rest of the players to be better thanks to my experience. I am not only thinking about myself, but also the performance of the whole team.”

“If I can help with my experience, not just with my play but also with my words… I have seen a lot of things in my life in football. If I can use that and help, I will try to do that.”

He also explained his motivation for joining Barcelona. Lewandowski leaves a smooth operation at Bayern, who have been run well for years. Yet Lewandowski was enthused by both Xavi Hernandez and Joan Laporta.

“I know these aren’t the best times for the club, but when I spoke with Joan and I saw the project, the direction that they want to take, that was the first step. I know the future will be bright.”

“This team has a lot of potential. Everything is going well in training. We have to show from the start of the season that we are on the right path.”

Barcelona will be relying on Lewandowski for that kind of leadership. At crucial points in the last two seasons, Barcelona have faded when the campaign has reached a crescendo. Aside from his obvious quality as a striker, it appears Lewandowski is aware of his role, which involves setting the tone for the rest of the squad.

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