The best footballer of Belarus Alexander Gleb - about his childhood, Russian roots and why he likes living in Minsk
Alexander Gleb managed to play not only in Europe, and for such teams as "Arsenal" and "Barcelona", but also for the Samara "Wings of the Soviets". At the same time, Alexander intends to live in Minsk. Where he recently married and became a father. And he continues to do what he loves - to play football.
Alexander, how do Russians differ from Belarusians? And how are we similar?
Alexander Gleb: Good question. How are they similar? Yes, everyone (laughs). Just that the passports are different.
Well, okay, are we different in some way?
Alexander Gleb: Perhaps because Russia is a huge country, multi-confessional. You have so many different nationalities. And this is not the case with us. And so, in principle, we are alike in everything. My mother is generally from Russia, from Ryazan. Yes, I am Belarusian, but I have more relatives in Russia than here. They mainly live in the Moscow region, Moscow.
Do you keep in touch?
Alexander Gleb: Mom communicates with them periodically. They come to us every summer, parents sometimes go to Ryazan.
Have you been there?
Alexander Gleb: Of course. When my mother's father was alive, we went there almost every year. Memories - the sea! Was cool. Still, childhood in the Soviet Union was special: all the children are on the street, playing, having fun, talking. You come back from school, and the courtyards are all full. And the mood rises immediately. I remember how I waited until the lessons were over, so that I could drop home for a minute, leave my briefcase, and back into the yard. Unforgettable feelings. I am happy that I was born at such a time. Now everyone has computers, set-top boxes, gadgets. And then there was none of this. But people talked more.
Have you ever thought about playing for the Russian national team?
Alexander Gleb: Yes, in childhood I did not think about it at all. I played in my yard, then my father took me to school. When I started playing, then some conversations started. That, they say, they were interested in from Russia. But I never thought about it.
Do your parents live in Minsk?
Alexander Gleb: Yes. But my mother is drawn to go home at least once a year. It happens that one year my mother flies there, and the next year her relatives come to us, to Minsk. In general, the year they are, the year we are.
Is it more convenient for you to live in London, Barcelona or Minsk?
Alexander Gleb: I love my homeland very much and am happy that I live here. Everything is compact, clean, everything is green. In general, I am a happy person.
At the end of 2016, your daughter Alexandra was born. How does it feel to be a father at 35?
Alexander Gleb: Cool! Of course I was worried. But I’ll tell you the following - it’s our custom that we want children as soon as possible. But in Europe, everything is different. There, in general, up to 40 years old, few have children. There, everyone somehow thinks of themselves. About his career, interests. And only then, by the age of 40, they begin to think about children.
When did you start thinking about children?
Alexander Gleb: After 30. I felt that something was missing. I finally realized that I wanted children when I met my man, my wife Svetlana. I met her - and into battle (laughs).
Has your life changed a lot since the birth of your child?
Alexander Gleb: Of course. More laughter, more screams (laughs). I don't even know how to describe this state. This is happiness, joy. You wake up smiling. This happy miracle runs towards. We also have an older daughter. Such a big family. And we are all for each other.
Have you taken part in childbirth? Where did you wait?
Alexander Gleb: In the hospital, behind the wall. It didn't matter to me whether there would be a daughter or a son. I remember the moment when I first saw her. Such a small lump. It’s worth living for moments like this.
Why was they named Alexandra? Who chose the name?
Alexander Gleb: In general, I decided so. The wife began to choose among some foreign names. And I wanted my own, dear.
How do you sleep? By the way, is the child calm?
Alexander Gleb: It was difficult until 3-4 months. Didn't get enough sleep. It has become much easier now.
Are you planning to come to Russia for the World Cup?
Alexander Gleb: How it goes. There is a desire to come. The same Moscow is close. Maybe we will be able to escape in Sochi. We'll see.
What do you expect from the World Cup?
Alexander Gleb: It will be an unreal holiday. I follow the news, I see that some people are trying to somehow spoil it. Don't pay attention to them. I see only one thing: people are interested in coming to Russia. It will be unforgettable…
Arthur Nanyan, [email protected]