News and opinions
31 July 2012
Pepe spoke with the press after the first training session on the third day at the UCLA. The Real Madrid defender praised the team spirit of the squad trained by José Mourinho and analysed the League which they won last season: "The points we have earned and the goals scored show that we deserved to win the League. We demonstrated that we are a very strong team and that when we have to play, we really do play and when we have to fight for victory, we really do fight. We have a strong sense of comradeship and we won the world's best League thanks to that comradeship".
The Portuguese player, who is beginning his sixth season at Real Madrid, spoke of the motivation with which his team looks towards the season: "We are really looking forward to all the training sessions. The team is gaining a very high level to face the season and when Real Madrid begins the year, it has to be ready to face all the trophies. We know each other better and it's the coach’s third year. We understand his mentality and we are ready to face and try to win all the trophies. After each training session we are in an even better position to help the team and get to the top".
When asked about José Mourinho, his coach, the Real Madrid defender only had words of praise: "He's a coach who demands a lot from us to be able to win and be competitive. In the time we have been here, he is showing that he knows a lot, that he knows us and that he has the same keenness to win trophies".
On Xabi Alonso, who didn't finish the morning session, he revealed: "It's normal for these kinds of things to happen during a training session. It was a bump and he's already with the doctor, but I think he will be in the afternoon session". He also mentioned Kaká, saying: "He's a great player and forms part of our squad. I am very happy that he's here. He's a Real Madrid player and we must hold him in high esteem".
When asked about his personal situation in the team and that of his compatriot, Coentrão, Pepe got straight to the point: "When I got here my signing sparked a lot of controversy. I adapted and things turned out well. People like me and are very fond of me. I really like that fondness. Fabio doesn't have to show anything. He's a quality player, is young and played well during the European Football Championship. His entire career has been in Portugal and the time he spent at Zaragoza was a bad experience for him. Nobody can deny his skill, but it is difficult to play for Real Madrid. People must support him and be patient with him. Together with Marcelo, it's an honour for us to have the two best left-backs in the world".
The Real Madrid defender mentioned the names which have been circulating in order to strengthen the team next season: "The coach knows what the team needs. It's an issue for Mourinho and the president. Witsel is a really great payer and is doing things well in his team. If he comes to Madrid he will be welcomed and if he doesn't, I wish him all the luck in the world. Last year we won the League with the same players who are here".
Lastly, he mentioned the ever increasing competitive edge which football has taken on in the United States: "It's my third pre-season here and each year I realise that football players are more skilled and competitive. Football is universal".
|Camiseta de Pepe en la tienda del Real Madrid para España|
|Camiseta de Pepe en la tienda del Real Madrid Internacional|