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Yussuf Poulsen On The Rise Of RB Leipzig And Working With Ralf Rangnick

Yussuf Poulsen On The Rise Of RB Leipzig And Working With Ralf Rangnick

An interview with Yussuf Poulsen, by Callum McFadden for WFi.

You started your career at Lyngby Boldklub in Denmark. What are your memories of your time at the club?

“I was very young when I played at Lyngby and I was playing for the club while still going to school.

“I then made the jump into the first team early which helped a lot in order for me to get used to professional football.

“I will always be thankful for the club because they believed in me and gave me the chance to become a professional player.”

You moved to RB Leipzig in 2013 when the club were in the 3rd tier of German football. You have been with them through the leagues to now competing at the top of the Bundesliga. Can you describe what that journey has been like from your point of view? 

“It has been quite a journey. When Ralf Rangnick told me about his vision of RB Leipzig becoming a Champions League club back in 2012, I could not grasp it in all honesty.

“Of course, I believed that we could be successful but that it went that quickly I could not imagine.

“I somewhat became an adult during that time too. When I arrived, I was very young with no experience. Now, I am a man, being with the club for 10 years in July.

“We have gone through many great times, fighting our way up through the leagues, playing on the European stage and winning our first title last year. I am so proud of this journey.”

You won the DFB-Pokal in 2022 against SC Freiburg. What did it mean to you and the club to win the first major honour in the club’s history?

“It was just amazing. Being with the club for so long, going all the way and finally lifting the trophy up in the air, was something exceptional. It still gives me goosebumps by talking about it.

“Plus, I was also so happy for the fans and the city, because they support us all the time and we have all grown together with the club.

“It was a milestone in my career but also in the club’s history. But we are hungry for more success and we keep pushing forward to achieve our goals in the future.”

During your time at the club, you have played under managers such as Ralf Rangnick, Julian Nagelsmann and current manager Marco Rose. What has it been like to work with such highly-rated coaches?

“I am lucky to be able to have worked and work with such great coaches such as Ralf, Julian and Marco.

“They are definitely among the best in the business and they helped me improve my game in different areas.

“I have to give a special mention to Ralf Rangnick because had such a big influence on me, he was the one who scouted me and supported me all the way.”

Finally, Yussuf, you have represented Denmark at the World Cup and the European Championship – scoring in both tournaments. What does representing Denmark mean to you and how would you sum up playing at such tournaments?

“I take a lot of pride in representing my country. We have a great group of guys that formed a real bond during the past years.

“To play for Denmark on the biggest stages in football means a lot to me. We want to make the Danish people happy and show off what we are made of.”