Glasgow Rangers defender Calvin Bassey has named his greatest influence to be David Alaba of Real Madrid.
The young defender is a product of Leicester City's academy. In 2020, Rangers scouted and signed him up, and he has been a staple of the squad ever since.
In his time at Leicester's academy, he explored being a forward and wanted to emulate Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. However, his coaches noticed his defensive abilities and he was soon moved to the backline where he has since found his place.
As a result, he has had to find a new model for his game play and in a recent interview following a successful personal campaign for him, he mentioned that the former Bayern Munich defender is who he looks up to as he becomes a better defender.
Speaking on a YouTube channel, Bassey said: “It changed over the years as my position changed. I started off as a winger so probably Ronaldo and Messi, but now it’s changed a bit to David Alaba.
“He plays a similar position to me, left-back and centre-half, and he’s a top-quality player.”
Bassey speaks on career ambitions
Bassey also spoke about his future ambitions, making it clear that titles at the club and international level with Nigeria is what he desires most.
He has already won two titles with Rangers, the Scottish Premiership title in the 2020/21 season and the Scottish Cup recently against Heart of Midlothian on the last day of season football action in Scotland.
He, however, noted that he would want to test himself against the best while winning those titles, which opens the door for an exit from Ibrox in the near future amidst transfer speculation.
“My dream, obviously, is to win trophies,” Bassey said. “I want to be part of a winning team and test myself against some of the best players in the world domestically and at the international level.”
Bassey attracting interest from top sides
It is understood that Premier League suitors are lining up at his doorstep waiting to take him to England. His former manager Steven Gerrard of Aston Villa, who gave him his big break at Rangers, as well as his former club Leicester City are looking to sign Bassey ahead of the new season.
For now, however, Bassey will focus on turning up for Nigeria as they face Ecuador and Mexico in friendlies on May 29 and June 3 in preparation for June 9, when their 2023 African Cup of Nations qualifier campaign will kick off against Sierra Leone.
Bassey will especially be looking to put in a good shift for the Super Eagles, having had a mixed first three caps. He has shown better quality at Ibrox and in Europe, so fans of the Super Eagles will be hoping he can bring that quality to the next games.
This article was most recently revised and updated 7 months ago