A Full Day In Melbourne

17 Jul

Satellite (8)The team trained today in front of over 10,000 fans at the Melbourne Cricket Grounds. Wowsers! I hope watishista backwards was there. If you were, please give us your first hand recap!

The boys have been a bit cheeky in training. Check out Cris playing a trick pass off his back and Isco scoring two great shots.

The team also spent sometime with Australian Rules footballers Trent Cotchan (Richmond Football Club), Bryce Gibbs (Carlton Football Club ), Jack Trengove (Melbourne Football Club), Brett Deledio (Richmond Football Club ), Ivan Maric (Richmond Football Club) and Jobe Watson (Essendon Football Club).

"Dude! Is the Dowager Countess really that obnoxious?" Edith: "Erm..."

“Dude! I gotta know – is the Dowager Countess really that obnoxious?” Lukita: “Erm…”


Real Madrid players have kick about with an Australian rules football

The squad had a fun time and delighted fans present at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

Real Madrid did not only delight the the 10,000 fans in the stands of the Melbourne Cricket Ground during the training session, they also did once it was finished. Taking advice from Trent Cotchan, Bryce Gibbs, Jack Trengove, Brett Deledio, Ivan Maric and Jobe Watson, six captains representing Australian rules football side, most of the players dared to have a kick about with an Aussie rules ball. Cristiano Ronaldo, Bale and Marcelo even scored goals in one of the nets set out on the pitch.

The team also did a meet and greet with lucky fans.

Satellite (5)I loved Cris with this kid! He reminds me of Ralphie from A Christmas Story. Careful around Cristiano, kid! He might shoot your eye out…with a well placed soccer ball.  (This will make no sense whatsoever unless you’ve seen the movie).



Benítez: “We want to win lots of games, lots of titles, and we want Madrid fans to be united”

“The team is feeling very good. Against Roma we will be aiming to see some of the things we have been working on”, he pointed out in the press conference at Melbourne Cricket Ground.

Rafa Benítez gave a press conference in the media room. The Real Madrid coach analysed the game against Roma: “Madrid fans must think about winning lots of matches, titles and helping out the side. The team is feeling very good and against Roma we will be aiming to see some of the things that we have been working on. We hope that it will be a great spectacle”.

“Improving defence is one of the aims, and we will see if the small things I have been working on are evident tomorrow against a great side that has a great manager. Rudi García is a great friend of mine. Their last two seasons have been great and they have good players”.

Ramos and his professionalism
“Ramos is an excellent professional and it is a pleasure to see how he works on a day to day basis. The president has said that he is going to stay on at the club and if that is the case then I am the happiest man in the world. Seeing how motivated he is, I believe that he is going to be a great pillar for the side. I spoke to him over summer and in Madrid. We haven’t talked about that subject again because my concern is that he works well and he does. He is a vital player due to his ability and leadership in the dressing room”.

Feeling after the first few days of work
“The team is feeling very good. They are a very professional group who do what you ask them, and with intensity. The group is quite good. Ronaldo, Bale, James, Isco, Benzema…everyone is at a very high level and I like the problem of having to choose”.

I hope that by winning games, the players will make me enjoy myself.

“We have a great side, but we have to improve the squad with a lot of work, dedication and by giving the players what they need so that when they need to play, they play well. My work is similar to that which I would do with another side, but it has much more significance here. I have been at home and everything is positive”.

The importance of Cristiano Ronaldo
“He is one of the best players in the world. We tried to sign him when I was at Valencia and he made the difference at Manchester United. There are a lot of players with a really high performance level, he and Bale, Benzema and James are among the best players in the world”.

Casillas’ departure
“The first player I called was Casillas. Iker Casillas was the player I talked to most. When I sat down with him I found out about his idea of leaving if a good side came forward. He left and I wish him all the best because he is a legend at Real Madrid. I do not like to see Madrid fans divided or continuing to have a debate that is no longer a debate. Madrid fans must think about winning lots of games, titles and helping the team out”.

The goalkeeper situation
“I am not worried about that subject. Navas is clear about his situation. He is ahead of Pacheco and Rubén. If another phenomenal goalkeeper arrives then he will work with them. We have good goalkeepers and if we can improve it will be positive, but it is not something that worries me”.

Possible team strengthening
“It is not easy to find players that are better the ones we have. When I sit down with my coaching team and we analyse the options, there are not many players that can be bought. There are a lot of sides with lots of money and getting players from other sides is not so easy now. We aim to improve the side but we have to think about what we have”.

“The under-19 side reached the final of the under-19 European Championship with two Madrid players. We have a group of very good young players and as a former academy player I know how important it is to give them that opportunity, but I also know that we have to win titles. If we can find a balance in that regard it would be ideal. We have to try to ensure that the reserve players, who really feel what it is to wear the shirt, make it and get the opportunity”.

De Gea
“The priority is to get performances out of an excellent group. It is not easy to find better players than the ones we have. De Gea is a player at another team and I should not talk about him. We have excellent goalkeepers and we must work with them so that they can improve everyday if that is possible”.

Odegaard’s progression
“He has a lot of quality, ability and resistance. He is a great player, but he is still very young. He is training with us and we will see how he progresses. We have to assess what is best for him but it still early to make that decision. He is making a very good impression”.

The playing system
“Pre-seasons are about trying things out and getting to know players. We will gradually try out different systems and player positions. I don’t like talking about a system, what makes the difference are the players on the pitch”.

The fans in Australia
“The facilities and training pitches are very good, although we were hoping that the pitch would be better and we hope that it will be fixed so that people can see a spectacle. The fans really enjoyed today”.

It’s interesting to read this interview (conducted earlier) knowing that the Casilla signing was imminent at the time, isn’t it?



Kroos: “Benítez is creating a good team”

“Real Madrid’s aim is always the same: to win every competition we play in”, he stated.

Today marks a year since Toni Kroos was presented as a Real Madrid player. In an interview with Realmadrid.com and Real Madrid TV, the German looked back on his first season with the Whites, the start of the pre-season and spoke about his aims for the 2-015-16 season: “We have to win titles this season”.

It has been a year since you signed your contract with Real Madrid. What memories do you have of your presentation day?
It was a great day, 15,000 people came to the Bernabéu just to see me, it was crazy. There is no other club in the world where that can happen. It was a very special day for me signing for this club.

It has also been a year since you won the World Cup. What memories do you have of that experience?
It wasn’t bad either (laughs). It was also a great day. Our aim in the competition was to win the World Cup and we managed it. We were the best side in the tournament, that is incredible. When you begin playing football you always dream about becoming world champion and we did it that day. It was fantastic.

Do you have any favourite moments from last season?
Of course, several. The first game at the Santiago Bernabéu, which we won; my first goal with Real Madrid, also at the Santiago Bernabéu. Our fans are fantastic, I think they like how I play and I can feel that. That is why I really like playing at the Santiago Bernabéu, I love it. It was a good first season, but now of course we have to look towards the new season in order to win titles.

You have been working with Rafa Benítez for a few days, what is your first impression?
Very good. I think he talks a lot to everyone. He wants to create a good group, a good team for this season, I think we have a good opportunity with him to win titles. I hope we have a good year.

It is the first time you have been in Australia with Real Madrid. What do you think about the experience?
Up until now, we have only seen the hotel and the training pitch. At the moment, we have not seen much more than the stadium. However, we have two matches here in Australia, to raise our level. We will see a bit more I am sure. It is only our fourth day here and like I say, we have seen the training pitch and the hotel.

The new season is here already, what are your expectations?
Real Madrid’s aim is always the same: to win every competition we play in. Of course we will try to win La Liga. That is the objective, to win every competition, also the Copa del Rey and the Champions League. Last season we saw how difficult it is, we came very close to winning titles, that is why our aim is to do better and strive for La Liga and the Champions League. The Champions League is difficult because there are always four or five sides who could win it. However, we have a great side and will try to do it.

Casemiro arrived at the team hotel late last night. I know the first thing that I want to do after 25 hour flight is have my picture taken and meet my new boss for the first time, how about you? 😉
Satellite (2)That said, he’s looking trim and foxy in that blue shirt.  Welcome back, Casanova. Commence the bromancing.

– Lozil

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