Tuesday Training & Interviewapalooza

24 May

Satellite (7)The team continued preparing for Saturday’s final. Lordy, it’s only 4 days away!

The whole squad joined in along with The Pips (Martin Odegaard, Marcos Llorente and Borja Mayoral). The Baby continued his recovery and will not be available for Saturday. He may even miss the Euros which sucks.

And today was Open Media Day. Cue a metric fuckton of thumbs up and platitudes.


Zidane: “I’m very lucky to be here and live these moments with the players and fans”
by Alberto Navarro

“You have to go in to it calm, determined and patient”, explained the Whites’ coach.

Zinedine Zidane and Pepe responded to the media in the open day held at Real Madrid City ahead of the Champions League final. The madridista coach analysed the match against Atlético: “I only know what it feels like to play in a Champions League final and as assistant coach. You have to go in to it calm, determined, patient… You have to have a bit of everything. We’re going to play a final and that’s what everyone wants, the players, the coaches, the fans”.

“It’s difficult to say if we are better than two years ago. The idea is to demonstrate that on Saturday. It’s been a good season and the work that the players are doing is amazing. I don’t like to compare and we’re going in to it in good form. We are ready to take on this final, when the referee blows his whistle it’s 50-50 and we’re going to fight until the end”.

Pressure to win
“There’s always pressure at Real Madrid. It’s part of the job and I like it. I was a player and I also had pressure. I like it. I’ve got a lot to learn but the desire I’ve got to learn is tremendous. I’m going to improve, obviously, but there’s still a long way to go until I’m an important coach”.

Success or failure
“A failure would be if we didn’t give everything. We know that in a final the most important thing is to prepare well and anything can happen. We must prepare as always and see what happens on Saturday. I’m lucky to be here and share these moments with the players and fans. I’m very happy”.

Ball possession
“I don’t think it will be enough. In a game, in a final anything can happen. It will be difficult because Atlético don’t only defend very well, they’re also a complete team who can play and make it difficult playing. We’ll see how we play in Milan. We’ll see on Saturday, but you’ll have to wait a little”.

Praise for Simeone
“He does a good job. He’s one of the top managers in Europe and the world. He knows football and his team very well. He knows what he must do. These are the facts and he’s part of a group of magnificent coaches. As a player and coach he had a lot of character and he’s doing a great job. He’s got everything that a coach should have. He knows his team very well, his players, and that’s the most important thing”.

“There’s always pressure at Real Madrid. It’s part of the job and I like it.”

“Losing a final is difficult. It doesn’t matter who the opposition is. I’m not thinking about that. Only about preparing for the game and for what we will do on the field. We’ve got a great team. I’d like to be closer to the game because we all still want to play”.

On form
“There’s not going to be any problems that Cristiano Ronaldo goes in to the final at 100%. On Saturday he didn’t play a game we played between ourselves as precaution. We’ll see how he is today, but he’ll be ready for Saturday. We’re going in to it on form, as we should be, but this doesn’t mean anything. James is also a bit better and so is Arbeloa. The only bad one is Varane and that is serious”.

“Right now he’s out for Saturday. He’ll not be ready in two or three weeks. It’s less serious than what we thought. He’ll travel but he’ll not be able to play on Saturday. Regarding the national team, I hope he can play in the European Championships. It’s a blow for him and I’m worried for him”.

“He’s an important player. Working every day you can earn your place, and he’s shown that. He has been important for the balance of the team”.

San Siro
“I know Italy well and this field. I’ve played some nice games there. I return to Italy, after playing against Roma, and the feeling is good. I’m happy and thinking about how lucky I am to be in a final with this great club and the great players that there will be”.

La Liga derby in the Bernabéu
“Two months have passed. We’ve worked well and we’re going in to it in a good moment in the season. It’ll be a nice game and that’s it”.

La Liga and Cup double or Champions League
“We’ve got the Champions league final ahead of us and nothing else. We’re only thinking about this game and nothing else”.

Exchange his titles to win on Saturday
“I wouldn’t change them. How am I going to do that? I’ve got what I’ve got and hopefully what’s to come will be better. We’re all going to try to win together on Saturday”.


Ronaldo: “We’re on the right path to win the Champions League”

“The team is together and united to play the most important game of the season”, said Marcelo.

In the open doors day for the media, Cristiano Ronaldo spoke about the state of the team going in to the Champions League final: “We’re on a good path. We finished La Liga well and we want to achieve a good victory on Saturday, which will define Real Madrid’s season. We’re confident we can achieve it”.

“A lot of the time experience is very important and in this aspect we’ve got a small advantage. Atlético will be alert as a result of what happened two years ago and I hope the game will be different. Atlético will want to win but we are ready. We’re going to play with intensity and I’m confident about a victory”.

Record goal scorer
“It would be nice to get the record but that will come naturally. The most important thing is to win. So too is that the fans are with us and they get behind us like in the previous games to make it another magical night”.

Marcelo: “We have sacrificed a lot to get here”
“It’s difficult to get to a final but we’ve got the opportunity to play another after the Decima. We’re really together and prepared to play the most important game of the season. We have to keep our feet on the ground and be patient until the end. We can’t think about anything else. We’re going in to it in good shape, we’ve been humble and we have sacrificed a lot to get here”.

James: “It’s a unique game”
“It’s an important game, there’s a bit of anxiety but that is a good thing to feel. We’re good, training hard each day and we’re all looking forward to it. Hopefully we can win the champions League. We’re training well to achieve that. Our fans are unique and always there. They will make us fight for every ball and for us that is very important”.

Kroos: “We’re working to be at our best in the final”
“I feel very good and the team is preparing perfectly. We have had two weeks to prepare for this game and we’re working with a lot of intensity to be at our best for Saturday. The support of the madridistas is going to help us win”.

Casemiro: “Real Madrid always have the duty to win.”
“I wasn’t at the club for the Lisbon final. That Atlético team were a good side, although in the space of these two years their squad has changed. We’ve played against them on many occasions and, as always, it’ll be tough on Saturday. Since Zidane’s appointment we’ve been enjoying things more. We’ve improved and it was a change we needed. He’s doing a great job”.

James: “It’s a unique game”
“It’s a one-off game, there’s a bit of anxiety ahead it, but that’s a good thing. We’re feeling good, training hard every day and are really up for it. I hope that we can win the Champions League, we’re certainly training hard to do just that. Our fans are unique and they’re always behind us. They’re going to ensure that we fight for every last ball and they’re very important to us”.

Casemiro: “I’m living a dream”
“We know that it’ll be a game that’ll be decided by the fine margins and that it’ll be very tough. Whenever Real Madrid reach a final, we always have the duty to win. What’s more, this is the first European Cup after Di Stéfano passed away. After having played with Castilla, this is special and I’m just trying to enjoy every day because I’m living a dream. It’s the most important game of my life, and along with my teammates, we’re all very relaxed going into the final”.

Lucas: “To have made the final two years on from our last final appearance is incredible”
“It’s a dream come true to be able to play in a Champions League final with Real Madrid. I’m keen to put in a good performance and to win the game. There’s no limit to our dreams and this is a good chance to win the European Cup. The fact that Real Madrid are once again in the Champions League final is a reflection of the hard work put in by the team and the good form we’re on. To have made the final two years on from our last final appearance is incredible”.

Sergio Ramos: 1/2 Illustrated Man, 1/2 Actual billy goat, All thumbs up

Sergio Ramos: Part Illustrated Man. Part actual billy goat. All thumbs up.


Ramos: “Madridismo deserves another title”

“It’s a privilege to play in finals with Real Madrid and you must enjoy it”, explained Keylor.

The Real Madrid squad spoke to the media during the Open Media Day ahead of the Champions League final. Sergio Ramos said: “We know perfectly well the team that we’re coming up against. We know them perfectly. We have to make as few mistakes as possible and each players has to play to their best level”.

“Madridismo deserves another title. For me it’s a nice year because it’s the first one that I’ve been captain and it’s another motivation. I hope to lift the trophy but first we’ve got to win it. After so many years at the club it’s these moments that you enjoy in a special way”.

“Experience a good thing and this team has learnt to fight, we are united and the final will require an extra level of concentration. Mistakes can cost titles, that’s why we have to be at 200%.

Anniversary of the Decima
Today is a very special day for madridismo. Also personally. It was very important and a reward for sacrifice. The greatness of Real Madrid and football make it possible that what we lived two years ago can be repeated. Things are being done right and sport rewards you for that with moments like this. We’re going to do as well as possible and hopefully celebrate another title for the club”.

Modric: “I can see myself lifting the Undécima although we know that it will be difficult.”
“Thanks to madridismo for the unconditional affection in the good times and the bad. We need you, you’re an extra player and we’re going to do everything possible in this new opportunity to bring the Champions League back home”.

Keylor Navas: “We have all the hope in the world to win”
“I feel calm and satisfied. We have to enjoy it because it’s always a privilege to play in finals with Real Madrid. I’m sure it’s a game where we’ll see two good goalkeeper. You have to have belief that you can win. That’s why we work humbly, with a lot of desire and always thinking that we can achieve our objectives”.

“Since I was little I always wanted to be in a Champions League final and I hope to achieve my dream in this final. We’re playing for a title and we want to win. We have a big responsibility and we’re all going to be important. The team is very excited and working very well to go in to it in the best shape possible. We’re going to give everything”.

"Seriously, why are people still asking about De Gea?"

“Seriously, why are people still asking about De Gea? Dudes, I’m RIGHT HERE.”

Modric: “We have to go out with pride and character”
“We know it will be a very difficult game, like they always are against them, but we’re very confident and it’s a great opportunity for us. We have to go out on to the pitch with pride and character. I can see myself lifting the Undécima although the match is 50-50 for both teams”.

Memories from Lisbon
“I’ve got great memories from that final. It was a game that we were about to lose. In the last corner I had to put in a good ball amongst the emotion and anxiety of everyone. Sergio got up well and scored a great goal. After that we won the game and I get emotional just thinking about it. We face Atlético again and I hope that we get the same result”.

Kovacic: “Together for the Undécima”
“It will be difficult. We have worked well these two weeks and we hope to have a good game. It’s my first year at Real Madrid and I’m very happy to have made it to a Champions League final. It’ll also be a special game for me as it’s played in the San Siro, where I was for two and a half years with Inter. As a message for the fan, Hala Madrid and nothing else. Together for the Undécima!”.


Bale: “We are ready for Milan”

“We’ve had a good end to the season and now we have to put in a big performance”, said Carvajal.

Just like his teammates, Gareth Bale spoke about his feelings ahead of the Champions League final in the Open Media Day: “I feel good and I’m really looking forward to Saturday. The team is calm, enjoying training and working hard. We think we can win and we’ll try to lift the Undécima”.

“It’s true that I have scored goals in finals, but I don’t know what the secret to it is. In a final everyone looks to give the best of themselves and I hope on Saturday I can get a goal and it’s enough to win the title. We must thank the fans for their support and what I want is to win the Champions League to make the madridistas happy”.

“A final is a match of maximum tension. It will be difficult but we will fight until the final minute for the win. We know that we can do it, we’re confident, but it will be a difficult match against a great team like Atlético. We have to be patient because they defend very well. We must wait for our chance and when we create them, be accurate in front of goal”.

Carvajal: “Ready to give everything”
“It’s going to be a very difficult game against a great opponent who’ve had a great season. Derbies are also always special. We are ready to give everything and hopefully it goes our way. We’ve had a good end to the season and now we have to put in a big performance and prepare well”.

Arbeloa: “Winning the Undécima would put the finishing touches on my career here.”
“We’ve been to two finals in three years. In the first one I lifted the trophy and I hope to repeat that feeling of winning the Champions League with Real Madrid this year. It was a very competitive final and very difficult. It felt like the time flew and in the end with the goals there was an explosion of joy. I cried with happiness because I couldn’t believe it”.

The fans
It’s great to see the atmosphere from the field and see the fans. I would like to thank our fans for their support this season and the people who’re making the effort of going to Milan and to the Santiago Bernabéu. We’re going for the Undécima and we’re not going to leave anything inside.”

Arbeloa: “We hope to bring joy to madridismo”
“Like any madridista I’m biting my fingernails and looking forward to Saturday, but in the meantime, working hard. It’s an historic opportunity for everyone and it would put the finishing touches to an impressive career here, in my home. It’s a really important game for the club, the players and the fans. We hope to bring joy to madridismo, that all of the suffering has been worth it and that on Saturday we’re celebrating a Cibeles”.

Big opponent
“All madridistas remember the game for the Décima in a very special way. It’s the Champions League and hopefully we can continue to make history for this club, which is the best in world. We’re playing against Atlético again. This says a lot about us and them, that they are doing things in a spectacular way. They’ve knocked out big teams and they go in to it in good form. It will be a very competitive final”.

Nacho: “To win the Champions League again would be fantastic”
“We’re really hoping to win another European Cup and are looking forward to the final. We’re calm and looking forward to putting in a good performance. The Décima was a spectacular night and to experience that again would be fantastic. We know Atlético and it’s going to be a complicated match. We have to continue doing what we did at the end of the season and playing together as a team”.


Pepe: “The final is an occasion to continue making history in this club”

“Atlético are a good team and to beat them we must play to our strengths, thinking about the team”, he added.

Pepe spoke alongside Zidane in the Champions League final open doors press conference. The Portuguese centre back explained the key to winning in Milan: “It’s an opportunity to continue to make history in this club and bring joy to the supporters. A final is always 50-50. They’ve got their hopes, and we’ve got ours. It’s a great opportunity to continue making history at a club as big as Real Madrid”.

“We respect a good team like Atlético, but we must play to our strengths out on the field and think about the team. It’s an opportunity for me and I have to do things right for the team. I hope to be able to do so and if the coach picks me it would be a pleasure to help my club. We have another opportunity to make history and we’re going to try to play as a team to win. The most important thing is to prepare well for the final and be ready when the day comes”.

La Liga or Champions League
“Every title is special and for me the most important one now is the Champions League because I’m going to play it. We have to be focused on the final and prepare well so that on that day we play as a team, like we have done in all the Champions League”.

Personal state
“What I want is to be able to compete because that is what allows me to be good, competing with my teammates. I’m going to give my all in every training session and as a result Real Madrid will benefit because there’s a lot of quality in the squad”.

State of the team
“The team is really good. We worked hard last week and we’ve got four days to keep working. We want to be in good shape for the most important day of our lives and we’ll go in to it full of illusion although we know it will be difficult”.

Physical level
“Atlético will arrive in good shape. We’re working quite hard and the coach is going to prepare the game in the best possible way to be right when the final arrives”.

“Zidane is our coach. He came in and I can’t say what would have happened if Benítez had stayed. He has taken us to the final and I hope that he can lead us to winning it in four days”.

“Atlético have got players with a lot of quality and they are a team that fight together and play together. To highlight one thing about them wouldn’t be fair because they play as a team and we too have played united during the Champions League”.

Type of game
It doesn’t matter if we also play on the counter attack. Each team has their weapons and the only thing we want to do it prepare well”.

“In a final there is no favourite. It’s 50-50. Real Madrid due to their history could be, but in this type of game there is no favourite and the team who does best will win”.

A failure if you don’t win
“It would be a failure if we didn’t play as a team, that’s what’s got us to the final. We’ve got an opportunity and we want to make history for this club”.

Your most important game
“Yes because it’s the next one and a final is always important for everyone. My personal victory is waking up every day and training with Real Madrid. I do what I like and I do it with a lot of joy and I put that in on the field and that’s what’s made me play for Real Madrid for a lot of years”.

Godín and the strategy
“It’s not fair to talk about just one player. The squad is what makes Atlético big and it’s not fair to talk about just one player”.

Keylor Navas
“He has demonstrated during the year that he is a great goalkeeper. Mentally he is very strong and he really likes to work. It’s a chance for him to make history and that makes us happy and it makes us work hard to give joy to the fans”.

So this thing is really happening, isn’t it? Ugh. Cue the nerves.

– Lozil

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