So it seems the deal to bring Krystian Bielik to Arsenal is all but completed and by some stage this weekend we’ll possibly get confirmation of it. Although we all know that Arsenal like to tease us by eeking out a transfer announcement, so don’t be surprised if it doesn’t happen until the middle of the week.
But, like many of you I’m sure, I know nothing of this young 17-year-old and so I thought I would bring about a public service to you. Like I said, I don’t know anything about this player and rather than doing some actual research on the phone internet, I thought I would completely make up his origin story for you today. So, here it is:
Krystian ‘Treebeard’ Bielik (nicknamed by his teammates because of his size and unhealthy obsession for the halflings leaf) was born in 1998 in a quiet suburb of Warsaw, to parents Penelope and Pietre who upon receiving young Krystian into the world, were immediately thrust into the public eye.
Having given birth to a 6ft baby and spending 682 hours in labour, Penelope was revered as a modern day marvel and Krystian was hailed as something of a marvel by the local people of Warsaw. Penelope – being only 3ft 6inches herself, was said to have shunned daylight in the months leading up to the pregnancy due to her near tripling of size in the final few months of labour.
Pietre – a natural showman and giant strongman for the local circus – was obviously delighted that his son had picked up his genes and was known at the time to remark to the local press in Poland that his son would “travel as the newest of the wonders of the world”. It was no secret that Pietre saw his sons life in the circus, following in the footsteps of giant strongmen that went back in the Bielik family as far as the early 19th century.
So the career path his son was to take, would certainly be a surprising one for Pietre, that’s for sure.
Krystian had a challenging childhood. Being so much more obviously taller than the other children in his school, Bielik found time in class an uncomfortable one, almost literally as his school could not afford any more full adult chairs than the ones the teachers had. So Krystian had to kneel for hours at a time on a typical school day. It was here that the beginnings of his combative defensive midfielder roots were formed.
Building on his obvious size, Krystian used an outlet for which he could be championed by his school and fellow students: sport. Beginning with single handedly winning the Polish under-8s national basketball championship, Bielik was able to secure funding for his small school to receive a Government grant that afforded them full sized equipment to accommodate their giant child. In addition, the school managed to upgrade all computer systems and even build a basketball court to hone young Krystian’s skills.
But although he enjoyed the adulation and continued to play basketball until he was 13, Kyrstian never truly fell in love with the game nor any sport, until a chance meeting with a travelling leper just after his 12th birthday. So local legend goes in Warsaw, that the leper only appears to those who appear to have everything but who harbour a deep-seated longing for something more. Named ‘Larry’ by the locals, the leper is said to be able to reach into ones heart and pull out the longing that the individual wants the most in the world, showing it to said individual and giving them purpose to achieve that goal buried deep in their subconscious.
For you see, at such a young age, poor Krystian just wanted to be like the other boys. He wanted to play the game the other boys played. He wanted to play football. That fateful day, Larry gave Krystian a golden football, telling him to practice with it alone every day for five hours. The leper told Krystian that his dreams could come true, but only if he practiced hard, by kicking the golden ball against a concrete wall and ensuring that wherever the ball rebounded, it would never fall behind him. “You must be like the wall Krystian”, said Larry. “You must be as unwavering and obstructive as the wall. Then, you will see your dreams come true.”
So Kyrstian did as Larry said. For three years. Every day. He mastered the art of stopping the ball get beyond him. He became as one with the wall. So much so, that the he local passers by used to remark that at times they could not recognise who was the human and who was the wall. So too did a scout out for a morning jog with his St Bernard one day. The scout was a former player from Legia Warsaw, who has always refused to be named in public. But this scout saw in Krystian the potential he has and reported back to his superiors of a boy with a golden ball in the suburbs of Warsaw who could match any of the other defensive midfielders the club could have.
The scout returned the next day, took Krystian back to Pietre and told him of his vision for his son: to become the greatest (and tallest) central defensive midfielder the world has ever seen.
“Will be travel the world and become one of its great wonders?” asked Pietre.
“He will” said the scout.
The rest, as they say, is history.