Grzegorz Krychowiak was born on the 29th of January 1990 in Gryfice, a small town in Zachodniopomorskie voivodeship, just a couple of kilometres from the Baltic Sea. He took his first football steps in the currently non-existent club Orzeł Mrzeżyno. Then, as a junior, he played in Żaków 94 Kołobrzeg, Stal Szczecin and Arka Gdynia. He overshadowed his peers in many aspects, but in Poland he did not get a chance to make a debut on a senior level. As an outstanding talent however, he caught the attention of the foreign scouts.
When he was 16, Grzegorz decided to jump into a deep end. He left school, friends and his family to work on his skills in one of the best football countries in the world. From among many offers, he chose to improve at Girondins Bordeaux. In his first two seasons, he competed in their youth teams with success, absorbing new training formulas. In the meantime he remained in constant contact with the coaches of the national youth teams.
In 2007 he was called-up by Michał Globisz for the U-20 World Cup in Canada. Krychowiak will definitely remember the date 30 June 2007. That day, in the opening game of the tournament against the highly favoured Brazil squad, he scored a cracker from long range netting a free kick. It proved to be a winning goal, guaranteeing Poland a sensational win and enabling them to become the dark horse of the whole tournament. They ended the cup run in the last 16 defeated by Argentina, the later bronze medalist. Krychowiak's increasing form resulting in signing a professional contract with Girondins Bordeaux.
On 14 December 2008, during the tenure of Leo Beenhakker, "Krycha" debuted in the Polish senior national team in the friendly against Serbia. At that time he often appeared in the Girondins' reserves, but he didn't stand a chance to play for the first team. To gain experience while not wasting his time just watching clubmates' backs, he spent 2 years on loan at Stade de Reims, with which he got promoted from the third level to Ligue2. In his first season, he played 19 times while scoring twice. In the second one he also received much trust from his coach, appearing in 41 games and also netting 2 goals.
fot. Jakub Piasecki/Cyfrasport