14 September 2012
Real Madrid play Sevilla in their fourth league match after the international break. José Mourinho spoke prior to the match crash and said: "The only thing that I am concerned about is that the team has still not played well in the league. We played a great match to deservedly win in the Super Cup but we have played three league matches that I have not liked. This is my concern and I'm trying to pass that on to the players. We are all share this concern, if you can call it that, because we want to win more and play better and we know what we can do that." As to how he sees Cristiano Ronaldo, the Real Madrid coach said: "Cristiano is always a supportive team player who gives everything in every training session and is a disciplinarily exemplary."
The coach knows he has the support of the squad so that his team can recover and get back to their best, which has been shown since he arrived at the club: "For two years we have had a great record and that is what we all want. In this squad I do not know any player who does not want to do that. So I am not too worried. We are working together and worries a getting smaller. We believe that we can get back to playing well, even though have not had time to train together. But I think the motivational side can be done even without training."
After the return of his players from their national teams he spoke about what form they have come back in: "They are the same. They've all been away too long. I've been here too long with three players, and the guys from Castilla and the C team. They all seem to be doing well because none of them have lost with their national team and they have achieved their goals. All of them are tired but not too much and none of them are struggling physically and are ready for the weekend. I've seen that they all want to be working together in this group and are looking forward to playing this tough set of matches against Sevilla, the start of the Champions League against Manchester and then away in Vallecas is also an exciting match."
"I hope it's a great match, that the best team win and that they are wearing green". The coach has barely had time to prepare for the match against Sevilla following the international break, but he knows that his players can improve as they go along playing in these matches: "The match is tough. Our opponents have quality and we’ve have no time to train. It's true. Some of our players arrived tired from matches two days ago, others arrived yesterday and today is the first day that we’ve trained together, just before a match. We have to improve without training. Then, on Tuesday we have the Champions League. We have to win the match and work to improve and to get where we want to be. I think the mental or motivational side of things are what can make the difference in these moments. The only week that we can take to help to improve the team is during the Santiago Bernabéu Trophy, in which we can work on some plays and patterns. In other weeks we can only improve through the matches".
When asked if Essien could start against Sevilla, Mourinho said "He is ready and able to. He arrived with really happy and very motivated. Like when I met him seven years ago, without any physical problem with a contagious happiness, with a great attitude to training and a willingness to be helpful, unselfish, and do everything he can to help the group. He is ready and able to play and help the team".
About what sort of form Cristiano Ronaldo has returned in after playing for Portugal, the Whites’ coach said: "If he’s sad and plays as he plays then that’s perfect for me. My responsibility as a coach is to get the results. I have responsibility for sporting performance and that is where I have to concentrate. Cristiano works at the highest level and plays at the highest level. He is always a supportive team player and gives everything in every training session and is disciplinarily exemplary. I don’t have to worry about things that are not critical".
He continued to talk about the Real Madrid and Portugal forward: "I am only slightly responsible for players’ good performances and very responsible for players’ bad performances. Cristiano has had two years in which he has played well, well, well or well. 99% of the credit must go to him and 1% to me. I'm just a football coach. I try to get the best sporting performance and get the best value for money, because we can also influence this, and those are my responsibilities. When we reach the end of season we analyse the results. If they are positive, good, and if not, like ten years ago I accept responsibility. I think you’ve all have had 15 spectacular days. Nothing to do with football, international matches without emotion. Cristiano gave you 15 great days. Now, peace, tranquillity and football, which is what he does best and what he likes. We’ll evaluate his performance on the field and nothing else. If tomorrow I, as a coach, see that by the 80th minute he has played a horrible match ... he comes off and someone else goes on."
About the first three league matches and the level that the team has played at the coach said: "The only thing that bothers me is that I have aspirations about the result and about quality of our play. Last year we reached a very high in the two, in my opinion, and that's what I’m looking for this season. My teams have always been characterised by certain qualities and one of them is that the opposition feel that they are going to have a tough 90 minutes from the first minute. I think that in these three matches our three opponents have been comfortable on the field and came up against side they could beat. I feel a sense of urgency as a coach that my team get back to playing as well as they can again. The match against Barcelona is what has compensated for the start that we have made. The Super Cup is the least important trophy that we play for so you have to move on and think about the matches that we have in front of, which will be tough".
Real Madrid have had two sizeable wins (6-2) in their last two league visits to the Sánchez Pizjuán. Because of this Mourinho indicated that they were "two results that were out of context. I don’t expect that result tomorrow. We have played two great matches there but it is not normal. I expect everything except that kind of match that you win inside 15-20 minutes. It is a match where you have to be at your best against an opponent who has had two weeks to prepare, with a friendly game to try a few things out, with few players with their national teams, and of the few that have been Spahic is the only one who played 90 minutes. Our players played a lot of minutes in those matches. But obviously we want to win. Let’s see if the green shirts are any good".
In conclusion, the coach responded to Míchel, the Sevilla coach’s words of praise: "It was nice and I appreciate it, but it’s not like that. I'm like him. We want the best for the team and try to leave our mark on our players but on the field they are the ones that play and we only help them to do better. I hope it's a great match and that the best team win and that the best are the team in green" concluded Mourinho referring to the colour that Real Madrid will play in at the Sánchez Pizjuán.