Nicolas Sumsky is a youngster in a hurry. The Czech Republic Under-19 star has been linked with the likes of Serie A giants Napoli and, looking at his football schooling, it is not hard to see why. The midfielder has spent time with Cannes and Monaco in France, while he has also represented renowned Argentine sides River Plate and Argentinos Juniors. Still just 18 years old, Sumsky is now aiming to help Czech side Bohemians 1905 bounce back up to the country’s top flight at the first time of asking.
Recently Sumsky put his talent on show against Serie A opposition, scoring in a friendly against Parma, which had been staged to celebrate the 80th birthday of Bohemians’ small ground in Vrosovice, a district in the Czech capital. We caught up with Sumsky to find out what makes him tick and learn about his hopes for the future.
Inside Futbol (IF): Could you describe your technical skills for those who have not seen you play?
Nicolas Sumsky (NS): It is very difficult to describe yourself. I’m just 18 and as a footballer I am still developing. However, I believe I am a dynamic player, technically good and calm when in possession of the ball – also good at recovering it and finishing moves. In the future, I would like to be a combination of Andrea Pirlo and Gennaro Gattuso (laughs).
IF: For this season, what are your goals? Helping the Kangaroos [Bohemians’ nickname, ed.] to return instantly to the Gambrinus Liga?
NS: Of course, we will aim to return to the top division. We have a good team to achieve this objective. We will see, the Czech 2.Liga is very special and full of the pitfalls you find in a championship. We need to keep good form throughout the tournament, it is essential.
IF: What is your relationship like with president Antonin Panenka, one of the legends of Czech football?
NS: Antonin Panenka is an important figure and not only in the Czech Republic. I remember that even the guys in the streets of Buenos Aires kicked penalties as “Panenka”. Everybody knows him. It is certainly good to have such a personality in charge of the club.
IF: You played at River Plate. How was the experience in Argentina? What is your best and worst memory from your time there in South America?
NS: It was a great experience for me and not just football speaking. In the academy there are so many talents, the competition is monstrous and the training is very different from here. For my football growth, they were important years. I have fond memories of the first game I played with River Plate in Cordoba. We won 3-2 and I scored the winning goal. The ball was given to me by Manuel Lanzini, who is currently in the first team. The worst memories are wrapped up in things off the pitch. Behind the scenes, Argentine football is very rough.
IF: Right now there are a number of Czech national team players who are injured, for instance Vaclav Pilar. Do you think you will replace them? Do you feel you have any chance of getting to the 2014 World Cup in Brazil?
NS: This is a very complicated question. I have not been in the Czech Republic long enough to answer the first part of the question. However, there are a lot of guys here who are hungry for “big football” and they will be able to replace them. As for me, the World Cup in Brazil is my big dream. For now, I am pretty far from this goal, but you know, sometimes in football things change very quickly.
IF: What do you think of your colleagues Matej Vydra [at Watford on loan from Udinese] and Libor Kozak [Lazio], who are fortunate enough to play in leagues such as the English Championship and Italian Serie A?
NS: I’m rooting for both guys. Just like me, they moved abroad at a very young age and I understand how difficult this is. I think both, with time, will do great things.
IF: Which championship attracts you the most? Holland, Germany, England or Italy?
NS: Of these four championships, without hesitation, I choose Italy. I love Italy on the whole. I lived in Munich for four years and I often went to eat pasta and drink coffee in Italian restaurants and bars. I imagine myself living in Italy one day. I also really like Spain’s La Liga.
IF: Do you have a favourite team in Italy?
NS: I don’t have a favourite team. Instead, I look at the individual players playing in my position. It is nice that in Italy, football is seen as a way of life.
IF: In the past, you have been linked with Napoli, where Marek Hamsik plays, who has similar characteristics to you. Can you tell us if there was some truth to that speculation?
NS: It is definitely a good thing when the press writes about you in connection with a team, but no concrete negotiations took place. Now I’m focusing 100% on adapting myself to football in Europe and I am leaving the speculation to others.