Bayern Munich's Alphonso Davies named UN ambassador after inspirational journey

  • Kat Lucas

It’s sometimes hard to believe Alphonso Davies is just 20 years old. 

The Bayern Munich left-back has already won a Bundesliga, Champions League and DFB-Pokal treble, as well as the Super Cup and Club World Cup. 

Davies’ mantelpiece boasts eight major honours despite his tender years – and that’s before you take into account his individual achievements. 

As well as being named Canadian Player of the Year twice, he finished 2nd in UEFA’s Defender of the Year award and made UEFA Team of the Year, Champions League Team of the Season, and Champions League Breakthrough XI. 

To really understand Davies’ story, however, you have to go right back to the beginning. 

It’s well-documented now that the Canada international came from humble beginnings and was born into a refugee camp, after his family had been forced to flee civl war in Liberia.

They travelled hundreds of miles across west Africa to find safety in the camp, where his father admitted he feared his children wouldn’t have enough to eat. His parents worked long hours after arriving in Canada, which meant he had to balance his football with looking after his younger siblings. 

Davies is not the first refugee to rise to the top of the game. The great Ferenc Puskas left Hungary amidst political turmoil in the 1950s. 

Yet the Bayern wing-back is the first player in history to become a UN ambassador for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. 

“I know what it’s like to be a refugee myself,” Davies said, in a video on his Twitter account announcing his new role.

“My family had to leave everything behind in Liberia to find safety in Ghana, where I was born in a refugee camp. 

“When I was five years old, we were resettled to Canada. We built up a new life and I worked hard to get where I am today, but I will never forget where I came from.”

When the Davies family moved to Canada, they settled in Windsor, Ontario, before being relocated to Edmonton. 

The young Alphonso started playing football at youth level and was snapped up by Vancouver Whitecaps. 

By the time he was 15, he was playing in MLS and two years later, Bayern Munich signed him for $22 million – then a record sale for a North American club. 

It’s been a truly inspirational journey so far and Davies is now using his story to speak up for refugees around the world. 

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