Bertrand Windows and Doors

People Bertrand – Figo made me fall in love with Barcelona

The legendary English coach Bill Shankly once said that football is not a matter of life and death. It's something much more serious. For our friend, Damian, aluminum production manager, football may not be a matter of life and death, but it is certainly a very important aspect of life. He could talk about this topic for hours. You won't find a greater football enthusiast in Bertrand.

The football bug was instilled in me by my father, an activist of a local club. He had a group of friends with whom he went to various football matches in Poland. The first one he took me to was a UEFA Cup match in Lubin, where the local Zagłębie faced the legendary Italian Milan. I remember the match itself vaguely, but the trip, the whole atmosphere, it all made a huge impression on me – says Damian.

Damian got totally into going to matches. As soon as he left for England, he traveled wherever he could, visiting various stadiums. – I was at Stamford Bridge where Chelsea play. A huge experience. I was at the Manchester City stadium when they played against Lech Poznań. At the atmospheric Luton facility, I lived right next door. At Tottenham's new facility, which is cosmic. But what impressed me most was Wembley – he says, adding: – People spend their time differently, go fishing and travel. I love visiting stadiums. I would like to see Old Trafford one day and go to the Milan Derby.

From the perspective of the stands, he saw a lot of top teams. But the two that are deeply embedded in his heart are Barcelona and... Wisła Kraków. – I fell in love with Barcelona when Luis Figo, a player I loved watching, arrived there. Although in my backyard I was nicknamed Hagi, after a great footballer from Romania who also played there. I was small and fat, that's what they started calling me. And it remains so to this day, – Damian laughs. – Wisła is the second love. I admired them during the era of Bogusław Cupiał, I mean this team with Żurawski, Frankowski, Kosowski, Gorawski. I remember Grzegorz Pater's great performance against Barcelona. To this day, Wisła is the only team that beat Barca in Guardiola's era, when this team, having won the Champions League, was not defeated by anyone else.

He tried to involve his future wife in supporting him. They went together to the match between Tottenham and Wisła Kraków. – When we were traveling by subway, the entire train was packed with Tottenham fans. Only me in the White Star T-shirt. But no one complained about it – our friend smiles. – My wife liked it, but ultimately she didn't fall in love with football.

In addition to going to matches, Damian has another football passion - collecting match jerseys. He came to talk to us with a net filled to the brim with real unique items - a Portuguese national team shirt from Figo, Totti's jersey from Roma. Real gems. – I bought my first T-shirt in England. I entered this huge sports store. I saw Beckham's Real Madrid jersey hanging there. I loved this player. I knew I had to have this shirt! – he says passionately. Interestingly, he had another Becks shirt, from Manchester, but he gave it to his younger cousin who supports the Red Devils: - I regret it a little, but I won't take it from him anymore, - is smiling.

When asked what jersey he would like to have in his collection, he says: Hagi's from his Barcelona days. But it's going to be hellishly difficult to do. – I would also like Lewy's Barcelona shirt, it might be easier here. He is the first Pole in this club and, I have the impression, there will be another one soon. Unless it's a goalkeeper.

Interestingly, he tries to pass on his passion for cheering to his colleagues. – We at Bertrand are planning a joint trip to London for the Emirates Cup tournament, organized by Arsenal before the season. It would be great if this topic could be resolved. I would show the boys some of the big ball – says our colleague with a smile.

The conversation was led by Wacław Wachnik.

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