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From Lillers, in northern France, to soccer club Paris Saint-Germain, Colin will introduce himself as “just that guy”. Actually, Colin Dagba is one of the most promising French soccer player of his generation. We had the chance to hear his most authentic thoughts on his career, doubts and of course, his most memorable successes.
Interview : Kelly Lauriente
Photographer: Axle jozeph
Production: Naomi Dado
Stylist: Mickael Kidumu
Stylist Assistant: Laura Massamba
Model: Colin Dagba
Shoot in: Studio K
Jeans: RELANCE DESIGN
KL: How did you find yourself playing for one of the biggest football clubs in the world?
C: There were several failures and few successes at first. Overall, it was a lot of work. I want to play soccer since my early childhood, so maybe it's part of my destiny too.
KL: Would you say that your life has changed a lot since then?
C: I am more recognized in the street (laughs). Otherwise, I've always been a simple guy, so I just stayed the same. My friends jokingly say "Man, you changed!", but really, I'm still that simple guy from northern France.
KL: What is playing in an empty stadium like?
C: In the beginning of the pandemic, it was a huge struggle. We had to find different sources of motivation. We were used to be heated up by our supporters and the ambient atmosphere. Two seasons have passed since then, and we just copped by focusing on the game, without really being able to fill the void. I’m glad they’re back.
Top: STONE ISLAND
Short: STONE ISLAND
Socks: ROYALTIES PARIS
KL: What do you love the most in your profession?
C: It’s difficult to choose only one thing, but I’d say the human side. The relationship we have with our supporters and the people who greet us in the street is unmatched. They tell me that they're proud of me, that they're happy that I play with the PSG. I’m always deeply moved by their words. I see them as the recognition for what I’ve been able to achieve so far.
KL: The training center is an important step for a soccer player. How did you handle the pressure to constantly improve ?
C: I personally experienced a very big failure, just before the training center. I had not been kept in a club. I wasn’t the whiz kid. So when things finally started to work for me, I remembered that I had to enjoy myself and, above all, remain humble. The worst thing to do is to rest on your laurels once your projects met with some success. Humility reminds you that there’s always something to improve, something else to achieve.
KL: What do you miss the most compared to your earlier life?
C: The more you go up, the less free-time you have. Championships tend to follow each other in a very short span. It's a good sign to be busy, but I'd say that I miss the amount of rest I was able to have.
KL: Your most beautiful memory on the yard?
C: My first trophy. It was my first official match with my PSG teammates. We won 4-0 against Monaco in the Champions' Trophy.
KL: What is the hardest part of being a France national under-21 team player ?
C: We have to meet a lot of expectations. Whether it's from the media, the club or the fans. We must return them the trust they gave us. We need to make sure that our performance is up to their expectations, and even more. If you intend to cross the line between a “little blue” and a national team player, it’s probably the hardest part.
Jacket: HELMUT LANG
T-shirt: HELMUT LANG
Short: HELMUT LANG
Socks: ROYALTIES PARIS
Watch: MARCH LA.B.
KL: When you will have to say goodbye to the yard, what would you like to have accomplished ?
C: I’d like to win the World Cup and the Champions League. Soccer being my passion, I hope to make the longest career possible.
KL: It is now a tradition at Discrète: I have a magic wand with me, but I shall only grant you one wish. What is it?
C: Only one? End world poverty. It’s cliché but important.