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Christian Benteke launches bespoke collection

IN CONTROL: Christian Benteke has teamed up with Arshad Mahmood and Apsley Tailors to create a range of African-inspired attire

BORN IN Kinshasa, the capital and the largest city of the Democratic Republic of the Congo in the early ‘90s, Christian Benteke and his family emigrated to Liège, Belgium where they looked to build a better life.

Stemming from humble beginnings, the 27-year-old has since graced the Premier League, scoring an applaud- able number of goals. His career has also seen him in two FA Cup finals, once with with Aston Villa in 2014-2015 season against Arsenal, and then remarkably he returned to Wembley for another FA Cup final showdown with Crystal Palace against Manchester United for the 2015-16 campaign.

PASSION

Despite suffering from antagonising injuries which caused him to be side-lined for some 319 days, his fans have dubbed his goal-scoring ability as out of this world. The Crystal Palace striker is now on course to getting his career back to what it once was for the first time since signing for the then Premier League side Aston Villa – the man from the Congo has hit double figures with Palace.

But while his career looks to be back on track on the pitch, Benteke has also turned his attention to another passion in his life by releasing his very own Apsley Bespoke Benteke tailor-made suit collection.

While at the official launch of his clothing line, Benteke and Arshad Mahmood, the mastermind tailor behind the making of the suits revealed all to The Voice. Benteke said: “Football isn’t just all about the ball I think you have to try to create something else you have to be a human being outside of the football pitch that is what I am trying to do. It is not just about kicking a ball and running behind a ball that is why I am trying to do more. It is a life investment.

“Growing up I had an interest in fashion I am young and I am still very into fashion.” He added: “Apsley have some very good suits as you can see on myself. I am very happy to be here.”

On show is was evident that Mahmood, the designer in charge of shining a deserving light on Benteke’s African roots, paid homage to his native Congo. He said: “That is the reason I designed that colour, with the red and black – those of African heritage enjoy these colours, andIwassurethatthecolour would go well against his complexion.

"At first he was like, 'Are you sure I am going to wear this?', then he fell in love.” Mahmood added: “He is a massive footballer and a very big name, so I wanted something special to go with his name. The cut and lining of the suit has to go with his uniqueness.”

Mahmood said the personalisation of the fitting is one of the benefits of wearing a suit from the Benteke collection. According to the designer the line of fitted suits carries an ele- ment of the dressed good feel good factor.

“You need to feel like you’re wearing a suit rather than the suit wearing you. You have to wear something that is going to make you feel good something that fits your body,” he told The Voice.

“That is what bespoke is all about. We have in-house tailors we can do all the fittings and make sure life is made easier for the customer.”

ADMIRABLE

He continued: "Each suit starts from £6,000-£8,000. But bespoke service is not about what you cannot afford - all you have to do is choose the right tailor. You can even start with as little as £1,000."

On the topic of Crystal Palace’s FA Cup final against Manchester United in 2016, during which The Eagles were dressed by Apsley Tailors, Benteke fondly admitted that the bespoke slim-fitted suit was the inspiration behind the collaboration.

“This inspiration came around last year – I heard they had some really good designs and are quite creative about what they are doing. “I am really pleased that it is in my name to represent the brand with this type of suit – it is something I am pleased to wear.”

With the World Cup approaching, Benteke is hopeful that he can persuade the Belgium national team to have the Apsley Bespoke ChristianBenteke collection as their official suit attire for the anticipated games in Russian this summer.

He told The Voice: “Hopefully – I will try my best to make that happen.”

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