27 August 2012
Luka Modric has been presented as a Real Madrid player. The Croatian central midfielder, in the presence of Emilio Butragueño, gave his first press conference as a Real Madrid player at the Santiago Bernabéu: “I am honoured to be at the biggest and best club in the world. Everyone I need to grow as a player is here: the best manager and the best players; they will enable me to enjoy my football. I am so happy and pleased. I can’t wait to start playing with the team because this is a great challenge for me. This is the biggest challenge of my career and I’m sure that I will fulfil my ambitions. This is one of the happiest days of my career”.
The Croatian international talked about the challenges he faces in this new stage of his career: “I want to get a place in the side and I will have to work hard to do so. It’s going to be difficult, but I’m ready. I’ve come to play football and improve every day. I have set myself the challenge of winning trophies with Real Madrid. These are my personal desires and challenges. I am most comfortable in the middle of the park and I hope I can get a spot in that position, although I can play in other positions. It’s up to the manager to decide. I am most comfortable in the middle of the park. I am proud to be here. This team has had so many great players that this is one of the happiest days in my sporting life”.
Modric also spoke about the negotiations and the long process that he endured before becoming a Real Madrid player: “It has been a long process, but I am here at last. I’m happy, honoured and proud to be at the biggest and best club in the world. I am excited to be here and I want to start training and playing with the team straight away. I am willing to do what it takes. I want to play football and get a place in the team. It will be difficult but I think I have the quality to play here. It will be up to the manager to decide how I am involved in games. I want to learn, improve every day, help the team to win everything and enjoy my football”.
The new Real Madrid central midfielder defined himself as the following type of footballer: “Firstly, I like technical football. At Tottenham, I played in the centre of the park and we’ll see how Mourinho wants to use me. I will play wherever he puts me and I will give my all to improve the team and get the right results for the team. This is one of the best leagues in the world and Real Madrid is the biggest club in the world. They have had so many great players that I am honoured and proud to be here. This is one of the happiest days in my sporting life".
When questioned about his physical condition, the Real Madrid player revealed: “It’s hard to say because I’ve missed two games. I have been training with Tottenham’s fitness coach, working hard and I played 25 minutes for Croatia. I hope I will only need a couple of games to get fit and reach my peak fitness level and the level expected of me by Real Madrid”.
Modric, who will wear number 19, referred to the interest shown by his new team in signing him and to the emotion he felt when he found out “It all started before the European Championship and when I realised that Real Madrid wanted to sign me, I was excited that such a big club was showing an interest in me. I chose number 19 because there weren’t many numbers to choose from and it is a number which can represent me to the best possible extent”.
In relation to the three official games that his new team has played, he was optimistic: “I’ve watched the three games and I can only say one thing: how the league starts is not as important as how it ends. There are still many league games to play and we haven’t even started our Champions league or cup campaigns”.
When asked about the possibility of making his debut this Wednesday, the Croatian stated: “I am feeling good. I still have to train with the team and make contact with the players. I am ready and it is up to the manager whether I play or not. It is one of the greatest games in world football”.
He also mentioned Mourinho, “the best manager in the world”, and his footballing idols: “My favourite players were Bobban, who was one of the greatest Croatian players of all time, and Totti, from Roma, but in particular Bobban”.
Lastly and when asked about his former team, he said: “I can say that I am very grateful to Tottenham. I spent four wonderful years there and I enjoyed every minute. I would like to thank everyone who made life easier for me and my family in London. There are no hard feelings as far as I am concerned. I have begun a new chapter in my life. I can only express my gratitude to Tottenham and I am happy that this matter has been concluded and that I have signed for Real Madrid”.