Los Blancos got down to business preparing for tomorrow’s derby with Atleti. Let’s keep sending them positive energy!
Oh Sergio, you crazy pony! You’re straight up rocking your hair like Pebbles Flintstone and I have to say that I like it!
Well, of course you know who would be Sergio’s BamBam in that case, right? Nando!
A perfect comparison, especially with Nando’s new hairdo(n’t) and of course, we know full well he’s not averse to baseball caps or animal prints (and definitely carries a “big stick” which is obvious to anyone who has watched him on the pitch) ;-)
I think we totally need to recast the entire Flintstones universe now using footy players. Man, my brain is scaring me today. Back to the matter at hand: the derby.
Karanka: “Atletico are fighting to play in Europe next season, so the match will be complicated”
by Diego Jabalquinto / Translation by Michael J. O’Donnell
“Real Madrid is a great team, Jose Mourinho has a great coaching staff, the squad has great players, and we work hard to win every day”
Assistant coach Aitor Karanka addressed the media ahead of Wednesday’s 22:00 CET derby with Atletico Madrid.
“Given the situation they’re in, Atletico need points in order to play in Europe next season. This need for points and the quality of their players will make the game difficult. There are fewer games left each week and taking points is growing increasingly important. We’re fine and our players are in top form, looking forward to playing. We know how important it is to take three points.”
“We believe in the work we do each day. We work to thrill Madridismo and I don’t think anyone doubts Jose Mourinho, his coaching staff or the players. We have great faith in our players, we do not question the work we’re doing and our results speak for themselves. Sometimes you win a match, but the work sometimes isn’t enough to win, despite it being good. I’ve been thinking this for a year and a half and neither I, nor anyone here, will change the way we think. We are delighted with the team, with how it plays and with how it behaves. We work every day to win as the great team Real Madrid are, as the great coaching staff Jose Mourinho has, and as the great players the club has.”
“Atletico are in need of points. They are a good team and their coach, Simeone, has character. All this will make the match complicated. We’ve done well in recent years at their stadium, but it will still be difficult. There’s been a change in coach and Simeone had character when he was a player. He’s got a great history with the team’s fanbase and he’s instilled that in the team. They’ve earned good results with him, reaching the Europa League semifinals. That union has probably been the greatest change since his arrival.”
“I don’t know if what you mean by loosing freshness on our part has anything to do with winning 5-1 in Pamplona or 3-0 on the road in the Champions League. I don’t believe we’re tired. Those games in which people said we were tired saw us performing better after half-time. The team played to win in the three games it drew; it just didn’t happen. Our players are in marvelous form.”
“The support of Madridistas has been basic in our great results. The support they gave us in our last match shows the unity between team and fanbase, which will play a key role till season’s end. The support of the crowd always gives us more. They know how much is at stake for the team, and it showed with their support the other day and with how they applauded as the team left the pitch.”
Iker spoke to Bwin.com and shared some of his insights into the derby (and life) as well.
Casillas: “We only have to think about defeating Atletico to have a chance to win the title”
Realmadrid.com / Translation by Michael J. O’Donnell
“The derby will be a great match; Atletico grow increasinlgy anxious to defeat us each year, but we’re solid on the road”
Iker Casillas is an expert derby player, earning eight victories and two draws in all his games against Atletico Madrid. The captain analysed the clash for Bwin.com.
“We must only think about winning against Atletico in order to have a chance to win the title. They are increasingly anxious to defeat us each year, but we’re solid on the road. The derby will be a great match.”
“Simeone has refreshed the team and it shows in their most recent games. They may have had some ups and downs in La Liga, but they are generally improving. Just look how far they’ve reached in the Europa League. They will be looking forward to the match because they really want to defeat Real Madrid. They have good touch on ball and know what they must do. To this you must add their drive, the fact they host the match, their crowd…”
“We obviously study our opponents. We watch and analyse games every day. We know Falcao is an extraordinary player, but he is surrounded by other great footballers. We cannot forget about Diego or Adrian. Falcao may be their standout man, but we’re also aware of the supporting players he’s got, who are all capable of pulling rank.”
“We rarely give our rivals a chance to score in away games. We’re defending as a true team and manage to keep clean sheets thanks to the job we all do. It’s not just the goalkeeper. Keeping a clean sheet is vital to us and we don’t want to concede strikes on the road while also scoring from the chances we get.”
“There are many games left in the season and some will be very difficult, both for us and Barcelona as well. There is a long way still and a match between the leaders and the runners-up has yet to take place.”
“You always want to add something to your career every year. I’ve said it many times: once you win a league title you want another, and so on. You think about making millions of people around the world happy. You want to have chances to win every title by the end of the season.”
“I’ve learrned from every coach I’ve had. Failing to do so would be disrespecting all those I’ve had in my professional career and as an academy player. I’ve learned many things form them. When you’ve formed yourself as a player – as I did at the Real Madrid academy – and reach the first team, you want to showcase everything you’ve learned throughout your life.”
Back later with the call ups!