After his hopes for Bayern were stalled, New Zealander Sarpriet Singh began his career on loan this season at Jan Regensburg, where his performances helped him lead Germany’s second division.
Singh was surrounded by teammates after his stunning goal secured a 4-1 home win over Schalke and propelled Regensburg into first place last weekend.
The 22-year-old has scored twice and scored four more goals when Regensburg won its first five matches.
“So far so good,” Singh told AFP via video call.
“I enjoy playing football, I am happy with assists and overall team play. Hopefully we can maintain this momentum. “
Singh explains his shape by the extra pounds he put on before the start of the season.
“I tried to go to the gym and put on a little bit,” and the “work ethic and professionalism” of the Regensburg team.
“The most important thing for a footballer is to play week after week,” he said.
“Last year I didn’t play that much, or I was in the game, so playing consistently always helps, and performance depends on that.”
Singh was born in Auckland to an Indian family.
Having made a name for Wellington Phoenix, a brilliant career in Germany beckoned him after he caught the attention of Bayern Munich, who signed him in 2019.
After a period in reserve, Singh made his first team debut in December 2019 and became the first Bundesliga player of Indian origin.
He was involved with Bayern Munich, which won triple Champions League, Bundesliga and German Cup titles in the 2019/20 season.
Then his career stalled.
He returned to Bayern early when his loan failed at Nuremberg last season, but he has learned valuable lessons.
“In football every now and then, so you have to enjoy ups while you have them, because you will surely have downs,” he said.
“It definitely helped me better understand what to expect and how to respond or adapt.”
After a false start at Nuremberg, Singh decided to skip the Tokyo Olympics last month to focus on pre-season training in Regensburg.
– “Crossroads” –
New Zealand coach Danny Haye described Singh as “at a crossroads in his career,” and the midfielder has no regrets about betting club football instead of playing for his country.
“This is an important year for me. Last season, the loan didn’t work out the way I wanted it – it was very important to fix it this year, ”said Singh, who has played six national teams for New Zealand.
“It is always a great honor to wear a national jersey.
“I would love to go to the Olympics, but it was more important to be here with a new team in new conditions.
“If I had missed all of the preseason and the first two or three games, the loan might not have happened.
“I am happy where I am now, play games and enjoy it.”
Usually an attacking midfielder, Singh demonstrates his versatility and enjoys the space on the left flank.
“There is freedom to move and change sides, I like the freedom to move and take dangerous positions,” he said.
His goal is to help Regensburg win the promotion, but his “ultimate goal” is to return to the main team at Bayern.
With stars like Robert Lewandowski and Thomas Müller on the team, Singh has a taste of elite football and wants more.
– Key sequence –
“Once in this environment, you will learn so much about why they are where they are,” he said.
“They work tirelessly to take this position, and even when they are the best in the world, they still work to become even better.
“I try to learn as much as possible from these guys because – ultimately – I want to be at that level too.”
Singh hasn’t spoken to Bayern’s new head coach Julian Nagelsmann, but he knows what the Bundesliga giants want him to do.
“We’re talking about Bayern, one of the top three or four teams in the world,” he said.
“Consistency is one of the most important things in elite clubs because they know no other way than to win.
“Sometimes I can show what I am capable of, but other times it may not always be, so consistency is one of the most important things to get to the top.”
ryj / dj