Football : the month that is the life of Valton Behrami. changed


A month ago, the young Servettien celebrated his 18th birthday with a first start in the Super League. Two more followed. Before he moves to Young Boys on Saturday (8:30 p.m.), he talks about his last weeks.

On March 20, Valton Behrami played his first game for Servette FC, four days after turning 18.


A week is sometimes enough to change a life. On Wednesday, March 16, Valton Behrami celebrated his eighteenth birthday. For him the majority, and the new reality of his adult life. He had no idea that he would soon be that of a Super League player. That day he was just another talent in the Servettian academy, drafted into the U18s on weekends, in training with the U21s during the week. And then there’s this internal match, which isn’t meant to be a detection.

But fate does not interfere with formalities. “The Coach (Editor’s note: Alain Geiger) was there, the young left-hand side sees again. The next day I was called up for my first training with the first team. I was immediately well integrated, by the players, by the staff. And then the second workout I did was a specific one. At these times we normally see who is in line on the weekend. And I was with the appetizers. I didn’t really understand: I told myself it might have been a mistake. Looking back, Valton Behrami is having fun. It was clear there was no mistake. It was he who would be drafted on Sunday, in the derby against Sion, who won 2-1.

“good pressure”

It’s only been a month. But still. “Everything went super fast,” says the man who started playing football at Onex. Passages by Team ACGF, then Meyrin. Before integrating Servette into M15. “At the time I was a striker, he explains. And then, in Servette, the then coach (Editor’s note: Bernardo Hernandez) explained to me that they would put me aside. It was complicated in the beginning.” He too had to accept the forced break due to the Covid, as he started to get used to the post. And then, the progression was meant to be regular: never outclassed, for this winter, where we sent it to M21. “I have always had ease with the ball, but defensively I had to improve a lot.”

“I didn’t think at all that I would be able to play professionally at 18. Of course this changes my career plans a bit. But I believe football is a matter of merit. So I take things as they come.”

Valton Behrami, fullback of Servette FC

He clearly did that well. Until you end up in the Super League, and even regularly. Of the last four games, he played three (Sion, Zurich and GC), all as starters. “I felt pressure in the first game, he admits. But good pressure. Steve Rouiller has helped me a lot. I talked a lot with Kastri (imery) when we were at the hotel the night before. Jérémy Frick also came to see me. And once the match started, I was in it. Vincent Sasso also needles him a lot on the ground.

Comments that don’t take away from the side: “Where I felt a real difference from what I knew, it’s in the intensity of things,” he details. For example, if you lose sight of your player for two seconds, it’s over. Which also explains the variable performance, but legit for a player his age. He does not hide it: “It was good against Zion, for they did not come looking for us. I had a freedom in the game that was good to consider for the first time. On the other hand, it was much more complicated against Zurich. We were always one on one, because of their system. And that required more intensity and focus.” Real-time learning.

A CFC to complete

Not enough to draw too many conclusions. Valton Behrami will of course be in the roster on Saturday, for the Garnet trip to Wankdorf, where they will face the Young Boys. And that already represents a lot: “Honestly, I didn’t think I could play professionally at 18 at the age of 18, he’s still surprised. Of course, this changes my career plans a bit. But I believe that football is a matter of merit. So I take things as they come.”

Behrami (no relation to Valon, despite the proximity of their first names) still juggles school. Schedules settled, but a CFC should be completed a priori this year. Before he probably devoted himself entirely to football. “Playing in the first team is just one step on a long road, he puts it into perspective. But being able to play for my city’s club gives me a lot of pride and happiness. The adult he has become is still a child enjoying the moment.

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