Biography


Biography

Robert Lewandowski was born in Warsaw on August 21st, 1988 to a family of athletes. His father practiced judo and football in the Warsaw Hutnik club, and his mother played volley ball at AZS Warszawa. Robert's sport gene manifested at an early age, spotted by many coaches, most of them involved in athletics. It was football, however, that had the irresistible charm to the slim, medium-tall boy. He wanted to play with Legia, but was told he was too young, so his father finally had him enrolled for Varsovia. The school sports center was located near the Polonia Warszawa stadium. It was there, at a sub-dimensional and decrepit pitch, where grass was uncertain, not to mention hot water, that Robert Lewandowski took his first steps as a footballer. He was taken care of by Marek Siwecki, who had the right approach to coaching young people and taught him a lot of what he knew. Soon, however, the time came to taste senior football.


Robert was to play at Polonia Warszawa, but the “Black Shirts” were not interested. So he took on the colors of Delta Warszawa. In official 4th league matches he scored four goals. Finally he managed to get to the club he had been dreaming of – Legia Warszawa -  but only to the reserve team. He scored twice but suffered an injury that took a long time to heal. After recovery, when he was to start playing and showing his skills, he was issued his player card and was left without a club.

With the help from his mother, who was a volley ball coach in Pruszków, Robert started playing for the local 3rd league Znicz. The coaching staff were quickly captivated by his skills and goal-scoring capability. He got the chance and used it, quickly becoming the team leader. In the first season he scored 15 times and became the top scorer of the 3rd league. His team was promoted to a higher division, where Robert scored 21 times and again scored the most goals – this time in the 2nd league. It was then he started cooperating with manager Cezary Kucharski. Soon, he was on the wish lists of the biggest Polish clubs – Lech Poznań, Wisła Kraków and Legia Warszawa.

With his manager, Robert decided for Lech Poznań. With his new club he scored his first league goal in his debut match, with his European competitions firsts soon following. He was drafted to the National Team where he scored in the first game against San Marino. In his first season with Lech he scored 20 goals in total (14 in league matches, 2 in the Polish Cup and 4 in the UEFA Cup), following up on his success in the second. This time, however, the 18 goals in Ekstraklasa gave him another top scorer title. With Lech he was also crowned Polish Champion and started looking for new challenges. Offers were plenty, but he finally signed up for Borussia Dortmund. Lech was paid a record-high amount for the transfer. That transfer fee is impressive not only because it is the highest in Polish football history, but also in that a few years before Legia let him go to Znicz for an equivalent of a few thousand PLN. In Borussia, Robert's superior skills did not go unnoticed; his top scorer titles in the successive divisions were also appreciated. The club managers counted on a similarly successful performance in the Bundesliga, but gave him a year to settle in. And they were right! In the first season Robert helped winning the German championship, gained experience, developed his football skills, learned the culture and language. All this was instrumental in becoming a key BVB player in his second season. Robert became not only the first-choice striker, but also the team's top scorer and third-best scorer in the Bundesliga. He played a substantial part when Borussia won the double crown, i.e., the German Championship and Cup. He was also voted the best player of the league and was one of the top discoveries of the season, becoming an acclaimed and recognized player in Germany. Following this successful season he was with the Polish National Team at the UEFA EURO 2012, scoring the first official goal at the National Stadium in Warsaw. The third season at BVB was marked with good, efficient performance in the UEFA Champions League, including scoring against  Real Madrid, aiding the eventual group phase victory against “Los Blancos”.