Ain't stopping now! Emil Forsberg has just begun his sixth year for the Roten Bullen. On Matchday 1 the midfielder left no doubt about the form he is currently in - registering a goal and assist in the 3-1 victory over Mainz.
We met our number 10 in Leipzig city centre and spoke about the start of the season, his passion for Leipzig as well as emotional moments during his time at RBL.
First of all, congratulations on the victory, Emil!
You scored the club's first goal of the season against Mainz, set up another one and put in an all round solid performance.
What was behind it? Did you want to send a message at the very start of the season?
Exactly! I wanted to take my chance. However it has to be said that the whole team played well. That made it a lot easier for me and drives you on.
Also there were finally fans back in the stadium, which motivates you. To start the season the way we did is great for us as a team!
A few opinions after the game were along the lines of "Emil Forsberg - better than ever," Would you agree with that?
I had a great pre-season and trained well, also in Lisbon I did well in my 45 minutes of action.
In professional football, you have to take every chance that you get, and that's what I did against Mainz. I also know how good I am when I'm in form. I want to show everyone that the old Emil never left.
Your age and the time spent at the club makes you one of our most experienced players. How do you see your role in the team?
That's correct. At 28, you're one of the old timers (laughs). I want to use my experience to help the team develop, both on the pitch and off.
I still remember really well arriving in Leipzig from Sweden six years ago. The transition wasn't easy to begin with for me either, so I want to support the young, new players and help them integrate into the team, and also show them what life is like here in Germany.
What do the city and club mean to you?
Leipzig is my second home.
This is where I became the player I am today. This is where I experienced so many amazing memories. I still remember our promotion celebrations here in Marktplatz in 2016. The emotions, the people – that is a moment that will stay in my heart forever.
Nowadays it's not as normal for a player to stay at one club for so long – can you tell us why everything works between you and RB Leipzig?
The club has a brilliant philosophy and has a style of football that suites me. You can see that in the results over the past few years. From the second division to the semfinals of the Champions League is so incredible. Of course, it's something to be extremely proud about. But there's also a great team contributing to that, and a number of players who have had a similar journey to me here.
Aside from the club, I also feel really good here in Leipzig - that's important to be able to settle in properly at a club.
In Leverkusen, you're up against an opponent you seem to enjoy playing (3 goals and 3 assists vs. B04) – is there a certain game that you remember well?
To be honest, I don't really remember any game in particular. Leverkusen are a fantastic team, so we will see a completely different match compared to the one agaisnt Mainz.
We have to try and play are game, and continue to enjoy playing and try to ick up three more points.
Looking ahead, we have an exciting season in front of us, with another new striker on board:
Are transfers something you talk about in the dressing room?
We talk about transfers and you always look at who the new player is in the build up to the transfer. But at the end of the day it's not something we think too much about and we trust the people in charge.
In Alexander Sørloth we've got a striker who showed last season that he is a real goal scorer. That will help us as a team and I hope he settles in well and continues to score goals.
It's no secret that you're both Scandinavian:
Do you think you'll be able to understand each other well soon?
It's definitely an advantage that we can understand eachother lingustically - he understands Swedish, and me Norwegian. I will try and help him find his feet here. If he has questions about the club or the city, he can always come to me.
We've already played against each other a few times with our national teams. I also scored a goal against him and Norway. I hope he doesn't hold that against me (laughs)!
We're heading into an interesting season.
How are you feeling? Are there any personal goals or goals for the whole team?
We definitely have an exciting season ahead of us. We still have the majority of the squad here and we've added a few new players.
We're among the top 5 in the Bundesliga and want to get as far as possible in the Champions League once again. We also want to give it a good go in the DFB-Pokal this season.