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Janczyk keeps suitors waiting

Published: Thursday 12 July 2007, 14.57CET
Polish prodigy Dawid Janczyk is facing a difficult decision with PFC CSKA Moskva and Club Atlético de Madrid both interested in the Legia Warszawa striker.
by Maciej Iwanski
from Warsaw features

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Published: Thursday 12 July 2007, 14.57CET

Janczyk keeps suitors waiting

Polish prodigy Dawid Janczyk is facing a difficult decision with PFC CSKA Moskva and Club Atlético de Madrid both interested in the Legia Warszawa striker.

Polish prodigy Dawid Janczyk is facing a difficult decision with both PFC CSKA Moskva and Club Atlético de Madrid battling to sign him from Legia Warszawa.

Decision looming
The striker, who celebrates his 20th birthday on 23 September, is in Canada with Poland's FIFA U-20 World Cup squad, but as his side prepare for their Round of 16 tie against Argentina in Toronto today, Janczyk could be forgiven for having bigger things on his mind. Back in Europe, where he will be playing football next season remains very much in the air.

Big surprise
On Tuesday, Russian champions CSKA claimed a coup when they signed an agreement with Janczyk's agent Jerzy Kopiec and Legia to bring the player to Moscow for €4.2m - making him the most expensive player in Ekstraklasa history. Speaking from Canada, the striker said: "My manager called me to inform about this transfer. Wow! Over €4m - I can't believe it."

Spanish rumours
However, in the course of the last two days the story has taken a significant turn. CSKA have now been informed the player has not yet assented to the move with a mooted €3.5m bid from Atlético to take him to Spain proving extremely tempting for the gifted youngster. "CSKA have offered more money and a better contract but Dawid would rather play in Spain," explained Kopiec.

Polish hopes
Described by some as a Polish Wayne Rooney, the fee CSKA were prepared to pay for Janczyk had many harking back to a player who left Poland for a record fee back in 1982, national hero Zbigniew Boniek. Certainly, he is attracting plenty of interest back at home with many seeing him as the man to lead the line for the national team when they co-host UEFA EURO 2012™ with Ukraine.

Mountain roots
Born and raised in the Polish mountains, Janczyk started his career at local side KKS Sandecja Nowy Sącz - the club which once nurtured Polish midfield hard man Piotr Świerczewski - breaking into the first team at 16. Whisked off to Legia in 2005, he scored five goals in 18 games as the Warsaw side won the 2005/06 Ekstraklasa title but scored a less impressive four goals in 24 games in 2006/07.

Next steps
Undeterred, he has already scored twice at the U20 finals - no small achievement given the conservative tactics adopted by his side. Now Polish fans are waiting to see whether he can manage a few more in Canada and, indeed, whether he will break the €3.7m transfer record set by midfielder Jakub Blaszczykowski's move from Wisla Kraków to BV Borussia Dortmund.

Gazzaev impressed
Atlético are saying nothing about their reported interest in the player, but CSKA coach Valeri Gazzaev has made no secret of the fact he wants Janczyk, saying: "Janczyk is a very promising forward. He can score once, twice, three times in a match. I've seen him play and he has an amazing work-rate. He's versatile. He's the kind of player CSKA needs right now." Whether the Russian champions will get their man is a question that, for the moment, only Janczyk can answer.

Additional reporting by Pavle Gognidze and Paul Bryan

Last updated: 12/07/07 16.57CET

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