Moo-shoo-woof-ski? Moo-shoe-oof-he? Moo Shu Pork? I get it. The kid’s name is difficult to say. You know what’s easier? Noticing his level of play, his talent, his confidence. He is special and is only 17 years young.
Look, I know we’ve done this song and dance before — Richie Partridge, Dani Pacheco, Krisztian Nemeth, etc. We put so much pressure on these kids and expect them to move mountains on their shoulders. We become so obsessed with finding the “next” this and the “next” that, we fail to allow them to grow and develop properly. Every once in a while that pressure produces a diamond. And for every diamond, a lump of coal. Yet it’s important not to forget just how young some of these raw resources are.
Mateusz Musialowski was a relatively quiet signing in the summer of 2020 as his counterpart Melkamu Frauendorf, German national, received most of the spotlight then. Signed on from Polish side SMS Lodz, Musialowski tallied 133 goals in just 88 matches. It’s an incredible stat, sure, but if you’ve been around the sports world, you’ve seen hundreds of kids dominating lesser leagues across different sports only to be swallowed up by larger professional leagues. It’s a vicious cycle. A narrative as old as sport itself.
But let’s take a step back and enjoy what some of these kids are doing right now rather than what they could do someday. Musialowski is playing some lovely and inspired football for the Academy. He’s easing into the team with the ability to play across the front three at any of those positions. Smooth with the ball at his feet, it really looks like he has it on a string at times. He most notably showcased this phenomenal control during his goal against Newcastle’s U-18 team a couple of weeks ago where he received the ball about forty yards out, glided past five Newcastle defenders, and blasted the ball into the upper left corner, earning “Messi-esque” comments across the world.
It’s hard not to get excited about him. Being Polish myself, we are always longing for a new sensation. We don’t have the luxury of frequently churning out world-class athletes like some of the other world powers in football. We want the next Grzegorz Lato and the next Robert Lewandowski but we only get spoiled once every couple of decades. You know, for a country so obsessed with the sport of football, we really have a terrible track record of proving that. Hopefully, this next batch of young talent can change the trend. Luckily, if it does, we will have one of those starlets in red playing at Anfield for us!
You guys remember the last time we had a Pole in our starting 11, right? We all remember that night in Istanbul. We all remember the double save, the smirk and head nod, the wobbly legs, the save against Shevchenko. Euphoric moments. Here’s to hoping Mateusz Musialowski can provide us some more euphoria in the future. But let that come to us naturally. Let’s not force it. Let’s just enjoy the ride while we are on it.