Adam Hložek's first goal for Bayer Leverkusen was anything but trivial. In fact, his heel strike goal was worthy of any first-class player. That is how the 'enfant prodige' broke the ice last November 6 and presented himself to his new fans.
At just 20 years of age, the footballer from Ivančice, in southern Moravia, is experiencing his consecration after a transfer in the summer for 13 million plus bonuses from Sparta Prague to Bayer Leverkusen.
From the Czech Republic to Germany; from Sparta Prague to Bayern Leverkusen, home of the 'Werkself' (or, in English, the 'workers'). The same journey that his compatriots, Martin Frydek and Michal Kadlec, did in the past when they left the Czech capital and moved to North Rhine-Westphalia to don the black-and-red club shirt.
Hložek’s start was anything but easy, though. The Czech - who found his national team-mate, Patrik Schick, in Germany - was sucked into the negative vortex of a complicated start to the season for Bayer Leverkusen, up until the change on the bench at the beginning of October with the sacking of Seoane and the arrival of former midfielder, Xabi Alonso.
The revolution that brought about the change in technical guidance had positive effects on Hložek’s performance, who subsequently managed to provide his first assists, against Wolfsburg in the Bundesliga and Atletico Madrid in the Champions League, followed by his first goal (and another assist) in the 5-0 win against Union Berlin on November 6 – a glowing performance to be remembered.
Three intense months for the 2002 class player who, step-by-step, has finally started settling into the German league, adapting to the game style and rhythm of Bayern and the Bundesliga, as well as making his debut in the Champions League.
A destiny written in the stars for Adam, at least in the eyes of his former teammates and manager in Strahov, an area on the Petřín hill in Prague’s 6th district, where a mere few meters separate the headquarters of the Football Federation of the Czech Republic from the headquarters and training fields of Sparta Prague.
First was his debut in the MOL Cup, the Czech Republic Cup, at 16 years, 2 months and 7 days of age, on October 2, 2018 against Slavoj Polna; then his league debut, just over a month later, against Karviná, on November 10.
All these ‘firsts’ for Hložek came just a few weeks after the 8th edition of the CEE Cup, a tournament in which he had shone with Sparta Prague and which saw the Czech team beat the English of Everton in the fifth/sixth place ranking game.
This was the prelude to the beginning of a bright career for the class of 2002 player who, after delighting aficionados of the sport in his high school games on the banks of the Vltava, is now taking over the European scene thanks to his extraordinary skills. The umpteenth confirmation of the indisputable talent of this young man from Ivančice, highlighted in the CEE Cup with the Sparta Prague jersey, before his leap to the great international football at the age of 20.