Man, this week is flying by. It’s already time for us to meet Sevilla tomorrow.
The team had their final session today. Enzo joined in again while Mateo worked with the group for a bit before continuing alone. Isco and James stayed inside again. Gareth and Pepe continued with their recovery. (Video)
Zidane: “We expect a very tough game and we’ll be ready”
by Javier Garcia | Photographer: Angel Martinez
“We’ve got a very important week with two games against Sevilla that are very important for us”, added the coach.
Zidane spoke in the press room about the match against Sevilla in which his team will look to seal their place in the quarter-finals of the cup. Despite the good result in the first-leg, the coach is aware that his team should not be overconfident: “We know that it’s another game, it’s the second-leg, and it’s going to be complicated. Sevilla will want to do their best to win the match. We expect a very tough game, but we’re ready”.
“From here to the end of the season we’ll have difficult matches, this is one of them and we’ll always have to fight. Tomorrow we’ll have to overcome problems, I’m sure about that. They are going to come out strongly. I know how football is and when you lose 3-0, the start of the game is going to be tough and difficult. We have to be ready at the start of the game. Then we’ll see how the game evolves. We’re looking forward to a very tough game and we’re going to have to overcome problems, I’m sure of that”.
“You’ll see who’s going to travel. The idea is that everyone is important. Although we have won 3-0 in the first-leg, we’re always going to use our heads and respect everyone. You’ll see tomorrow who’s going to travel and how we’re going to play. We have a match tomorrow and that’s the most important thing”.
“James has a problem in the calf. We don’t want to risk it, but it’s a small thing. We have a lot of games to play and we’ll see how it evolves”.
Ramos and Lucas return
“They’re both in. Sergio, as captain, will be with us. And Lucas, too. He has no problem and will be with us”.
A lot of games against Sevilla
“I can’t do anything about it, it is what it is. Tomorrow we have to go to Seville and on Sunday too. The only downside is having to travel but we can’t help it. We can rotate a player on the basis that we have several games coming up”.
“We’ve got a cup match and then another in the league. They’re doing really well, they’re doing a great job, they’re a good and strong team with quality players. We have two massive games ahead of us. We know it’s a very important week”.
“I respect your questions but you have to respect me and I do not want to get into that. If I say one thing or another I’m going to get into trouble. What interests me is tomorrow’s match and that’s all I have on my mind”.
“We only think about the day to day, the work we do. The triple is the goal that everyone wants when we’re in all these competitions, but it’s a long way away and we can’t think about things like that. Things like that are won by working day to day. You can achieve things if you work hard. I’m happy with training today, I’m very happy because the work has been done”.
“Casemiro has rested a lot because he’s had a long injury. Now he’s ok and we know how important he is in the middle of the field, both for the forwards and for the defence. Tomorrow he’ll be with us and we’ll see if he plays”.
20 goal scorers
“It’s anecdotal. We don’t ask the defenders to score. However, when this happens the players are very happy and it’s good for everyone. The most important thing is that we work as we are doing and that we keep playing well and winning”.
“He is a very talented player who has made an incredible start to the season with Sevilla. Against Atletico he did really well. I’m not surprised by what he’s doing. He’s got a lot of potential”.
The following players were called up for the match:
Goalkeepers: Keylor Navas, Casilla and Yáñez.
Defenders: Carvajal, Ramos, Varane, Nacho, Marcelo, Coentrao and Danilo.
Midfielders: Kroos, Casemiro, Kovacic, Asensio and Enzo.
Forwards: Benzema, Lucas Vázquez, Mariano and Morata.
“It is a very special prize and I will continue to work hard to improve every day”, said the Whites’ midfielder.
Luka Modric received the prize for the best Croatian player in 2016, awarded by the newspaper Vecernji List. It is the fifth time that the Whites’ midfielder has won this award after 2007, 2008, 2011 and 2014. Modric (110 points), beat Rakitic (80) and Mandzukic (76), and was recognised after a great year in which he won the Champions League, the Club World Cup and European Super Cup with Real Madrid.
“This prize means a lot to me, it’s the fifth time I’ve received it and it’s very special for me because it has a great tradition. I want to thank those who voted for me. I have to keep working hard and improving every day. I want to thank those who have helped me to win this award”, said the Croatian.
Also Real Madrid and Cristiano were nominated for the 2017 Laureus Awards (World Team of the Year and World Sportsman of the Year).
And Martin Odegaard is off to Heerenveen until June 2018. Take care of yourself Norbit!