BERLIN (AFP) – ‘Road Runner’ Alphonso Davies lived up to his nickname with another lightning sprint early yesterday while Hansi Flick bettered Pep Guardiola’s record start as head coach of Bayern Munich, who opened a 10-point lead in the Bundesliga.
Having defeated second-placed Borussia Dortmund 1-0 away in midweek, Bayern enjoyed a 5-0 romp over Fortuna Duesseldorf.
The visitors’ defender Mathias Joergensen scored an early own-goal before Benjamin Pavard, Robert Lewandowski (2) and Davies hit the target for Bayern.
With five games left, the defending champions are comfortably on course for an eighth straight league title.
Davies scored the best goal of the game when the fleet-footed defender pressed Duesseldorf into making a mistake, barged past several defenders and fired home.
“It was very special, I did my job as a defender, I pressed high up the pitch and got the ball, then put it in the back of the net,” said Davies.
The 19-year-old, who was born in a Ghanaian refugee camp before his parents migrated to Canada, was nicknamed Bayern’s ‘Road Runner’ by teammate Thomas Mueller after the win in Dortmund.
Mueller joked that Davies is Bayern’s version of the fast-running Looney Tunes character after the left-back sprinted to dispossess Dortmund striker Erling Braut Haaland, himself no slouch.
“When the opponent thinks ‘Oh, I have time,’ ‘meep, meep, meep’ the Roadrunner comes and steals the ball,” quipped Mueller after Davies clocked 35.3km/h to catch Haaland.
Davies said he likes his new nickname after running even faster against Duesseldorf.
“Yeah, I know the cartoon, I watched it when I was growing up,” said the Canadian teenager, who clocked 35.4 km/h in a sprint at the Allianz Arena.
He was just short of the Bundesliga record of 36.49 km/h, which Borussia Dortmund’s Achrif Hakimi set earlier this season.
“Yeah, I am quick, but him (Mueller) calling me the ‘Road Runner’ is a compliment which I take to heart and it was a good nickname,” added Davies.
He has made the left-back berth at Bayern his own with a series of outstanding displays this season and recently signed a contract extension until 2025.