Bayern Munich youngster Joshua Kimmich has revealed he drew inspiration from Barcelona legend Xavi growing up and has nothing but praise for the for the iconic ex-Spain midfielder.
Kimmich, 21, has developed into an important first-team player at Bayern since joining the club from Stuttgart in 2015 and has already netted seven goals in 12 appearances this term.
“Xavi was my role model growing up,” Kimmich told the official UEFA website.
“He was a very, very good footballer, technically very good, a leader. He can lead a team and he is an absolute team player.
“He knows exactly how to combine with his team-mates and always puts himself at the service of them.
“And I also see him as a role model because he did not have the same physical presence as others in terms of size.”
Kimmich has been playing alongside experienced defender Philipp Lahm at Bayern and says the former Germany star is another important figure to him.
He added: “Philipp is a role model for me. There are very few players in world football who show the same level of consistency as Philipp.
“I can’t think of three bad performances from him, and that’s a quality not many players have. Players are always judged on their bad games, and in Philipp’s case there are almost none.”