​Nicknames in football can be a wonderful thing - especially when it comes to the elite players of the game. In fact, one can argue that you've truly made it as a superstar when you earn not only one epic nickname, but two.


Such is the case of Colombia and Monaco striker Radamel Falcao, who is known as El Tigre and the King of the Europa League.


With the 2018/19 Europa League reaching its epic conclusion at the end of May, KIA, who have been connecting fans with clubs and players throughout their inaugural UEFA Europa League Trophy Tour, went for a drive with the legendary frontman to learn about the making of his career, his childhood in Colombia, and of course those two nicknames.

"Here [in Monaco] it's all very quiet, nothing happens, there are no robberies," Falcao said.


"Mine [childhood] was growing up on the streets, playing football barefoot, another kind of life."


Along the streets of the tiny city-state, the ​Atletico Madrid icon discussed the origin of his nickname, El Tigre. 


"El Tigre came from when I was in River [Plate], in the youth teams, a teammate after a match said, 'you were a tiger on the pitch!' Since then, I have remained El Tigre. I didn't say much because it was a good nickname!"


The 33-year-old became the first player to win the Europa League with two different teams after lifting the trophy with Porto in 2010/11, then repeating the feat with Atletico in 2011/12. He was man of the match in both finals, and top scorer in the competition in both campaigns. No wonder they call him the King of the Europa League!

Falcao

"It [Falcao's nickname] is not bad either! Both wins were unforgettable," he added.


KIA concluded their exclusive interview with Falcao by asking him about his future plans and ambitions, with the Colombian responding: "I think that in this moment I need to go year-by-year, season-by-season.


"Continue preparing in the same way and take it day-by-day. And then in the long term, we'll see."


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