Feature: This record is unique, says Ribery with tears in eyes

Source: Xinhua| 2019-05-10 09:31:10|Editor: Xiaoxia
Video PlayerClose

By Oliver Trust

BERLIN, May 9 (Xinhua) -- In the autumn of his career, Franck Ribery feels more excited than ever before the winger admitted while he fought against his tears.

"It's crazy after all these years and all these titles and trophies, but I have a lot of special feels about this Championship," the 36-year-old former French international said in advance of his presumably ninth German Championship which is only one victory away and can be achieved this weekend.

He couldn't believe it "when I heard about it; but I will be the only player having won nine national titles with Bayern Munich." What appears like a brilliant farewell present turns out to be the real happy end of a unique career.

In a few weeks, Ribery's era with the Bavarian club comes to an end after 12 years, already eight German Championships, five German Cup victories and the award as Europe's footballer of the year followed by winning the Champions League in 2013.

After many turbulent years, 81 times capped Ribery not only found "his" club but a new home for his family.

"I have several options to continue for one or two years," he said talking about offers from Australia, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates. "But after that one thing is secured: I will return to Munich as it is the place my family and I feel at home."

Friends say, the entire Ribery family, his wife Wahiba and five children, is in unrest due to the decision that has to be made. "It's very emotional for me to leave, and at the same time decide what is next for us," Ribery underlines.

His phone seems busy 24/7, and more visitors as usual turn up at the family headquarter in the noble Munich suburb of Gruenwald such as his agents and possible new club coaches.

Former German international Markus Babbel announced he will drop by soon to convince the genius to join his Australian club Western Sydney Wanderers.

Munich, Ribery says, remains an affair of the heart for him. "I have been through tough years in my life, but I will never forget the people's support. I always felt accepted, much more than anywhere else," he commented.

Back in France, he seems to have lost the fans' support after several affairs around the national team and in private life he was involved in. Fans in Germany never lost their sympathy for him despite him addressing many different roles such as the immature enfant terrible or rogue, the entertaining comedian or the world-class footballer.

For more than a decade his name was connected with his Dutch counterpart Arjen Robben, who played opposite of the left-winger along the right flank. Both were vital cornerstones of Bayern's legendary squad winning the treble in 2013 under coach Jupp Heynckes. Fans called the clubs famous twins "Robbery."

Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge recently announced the duo will be awarded a farewell game after their career in the Munich arena.

It is three games to go until he crosses the finish line in Bayern's shirt, twice in the Bundesliga against Leipzig and Eintracht Frankfurt followed by the German Cup final on May 25 in Berlin against Leipzig.

"It is going to be extremely hard to say good-bye in our last home game. I am full of memories; this club is my life" he emphasized adding Bayern president Uli Hoeness has developed into a father figure for him over the years.

Hoeness spoke about the club's effort to find an appropriate position for the Bavarians' famous son after he finally has retired. "He is to be mentioned among other legends such as Franz Beckenbauer, Gerd Mueller, Sepp Maier, Bastian Schweinsteiger, and Philipp Lahm," the 67-year-old club boss commented.