Algerians in Europe

Bilal Sayoud wants to lead Algeria to the World Cup

Coventry City youngster Bilal Sayoud is making steady progress in his blossoming footballing career, and the Algerian is looking to take his country to the World Cup one day. We spoke to the young winger.

1 – Tell us about your career path so far.

“I’ve had a very interesting career path so far. I’ve been all over the world in terms of trials and playing teams across the world. I just played football with whoever my friends played for when I was younger, I was never at an academy or anything, just played regular youth league football across London.”

“When I was 16, I was selected to be a part of the Nike academy through numerous trials where it was really hard but I made it to the Nike academy. From there I spent two years with Nike academy, trialing with many teams in England as well as other countries abroad. We also played against teams in England as well as big clubs across Europe such as Barcelona, Inter Milan, PSG & Roma. After spending two years there, I was on trial at Coventry City where they offered me a two-year contract which I was buzzing with.”

“From then on I’ve been a regular with the U23s, I’ve scored 7 goals already this year and I’ve gone on to make my debut vs Walsall in October. So yeah I’ve had quite an unusual route to the professional ranks but it’s something I would never change.”

2 – What’s your position, and which footballers do you look up to?

“I play predominantly as a left winger but I’m comfortable on the right wing as well. I’m a player who likes to take on players and supply crosses into the box, I’m quite fast and athletic and I love to get forward and score goals as well working hard out of possession. I obviously look up to Mahrez, he’s a player who gives a lot of motivation to other Algerian footballers growing up in England to make it to the top stage. Other players I look up to are Arjen Robben and Lionel Messi.”

3 – What are your goals and aspirations?

“Well my immediate goal is to break into the first team for Coventry on a regular basis and try to establish myself. One of my goals for the future is definitely representing Algeria at the World Cup stage, that would be a dream come true.”

4 – Do you have hopes of playing for Algeria?

“Yeah definitely, I would love to be playing for Algeria, I’ve never ever been in contact with their youth teams or anything but I think if I become a regular for the first team for Coventry then I think that it would open options to go and play for them.”

“I’ve always followed the national team, I remember watching with my dad in a cafe, Anthar Yahia scoring that goal against Egypt to send us through to South Africa and it was crazy. My mother is German but I would definitely choose Algeria over them because I feel the passion for Algeria and it would mean a lot to represent them.”

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