Real Madrid have picked up three wins in the first three league fixtures of the la Liga season and Zinedine Zidane, the Whites' assistant manager, spoke to Realmadrid TV and Realmadrid.com before the team competition gets back under way following the international break. “Real Madrid must always sign the very best players. That's why it is the most valuable club in the world, which is why it belongs to its members. If not, it would be impossible”, stated the Frenchman, who spoke about Bale's potential: "His signing is very important. He has been the best player in the Premier League over the past two seasons and he will help us a lot". He was also full of praise for the career path of Cristiano Ronaldo: "He has spectacularly overcome enormous pressure. His stats, his performances… Everything he gives to Real Madrid on and off the pitch is genuinely spectacular".
How are you getting on as a coach?
Well, it is different from what I have always done. Being a player is completely different, but it is a job I enjoy.
Did you think it would be like that?
Not as difficult, no. But that's natural.
You seem to be calm during matches. Do you feel the stress inside?
You do feel it inside. That's normal. But it's the manager who particularly feels the stress. With everything he has to think about on match day, I am there to help him.
Do you miss your time as a player?
I will always miss it because it was the best thing to happen in my life. It is now in the past and I have to look ahead to my future.
How do you get on with the manager, Carlo Ancelotti?
Very well. I already worked with him quite some time ago. He's a great manager; we are all aware of that and he is also a good person.
The manager has conveyed several messages: he wants attacking football and spectacular performances.
That's what he said and I think people liked it because Real Madrid enjoy good football.
At the beginning, injuries caused several problems and we couldn't work with the whole team but the problems are slowly resolving themselves.
Gradually. Injuries are always bad for a team. You also have to deal with them from time to time. I think the most important thing is that they are all ready when the key games come along. It's an important year for everyone and I think it will be a good one.
Among the injured players finding their way back is Varane. You discovered him and I imagine that he relies on you a lot.
Yes, but I think that the best thing that he can do is to look up to Sergio Ramos, Pepe...He is an intelligent lad who learns fast and he is also willing to learn. That is the best thing for him. I am here to help him too, but so too is everyone else.
Varane is one of the many young players and I think that this youth contributes a lot to the team.
Yes. This blend between the "old" and the young is good for us and good for the team.
Among those young players is the recently arrived Gareth Bale. What do you think he can bring after the effort made by Real Madrid to sign him?
I think the signing of Bale is very important for Real Madrid. He has been the best player in the Premier League over the past two seasons and he will help us a lot in this regard. Some of my statements about Gareth have been misinterpreted. When I said that he is a player that costs a lot of money, that he cost a lot of money, even the president said that, I was referring to the great pressure that this player will be under. At least that's what happened to me. In Bale's case, from the very beginning, I encouraged the president to make every effort to sign him because, as I said, he will bring so much to us, the team and everyone.
In your opinion, what do signings such as that of Bale, Cristiano Ronaldo and your own mean?
Real Madrid must always sign the very best players. That's why it is the most valuable club in the world, which is why it belongs to its members. If not, it would be impossible.
Let's come back to pressure. How does a player live with it?
The pressure is huge, of course, but we have the best example in Cristiano Ronaldo. He is the most expensive player in football history and he has spectacularly overcome enormous pressure. His stats, his performances… Everything he gives to Real Madrid on and off the pitch is genuinely spectacular. Real Madrid do not consider his price but rather everything he brings to the club.
Have you ever seen any player like Cristiano Ronaldo?
No. I think he is currently ahead of any other player. Because of everything he does, because of how he works...He is a Real Madrid player and we are delighted with that.
Cristiano is all about attacking football and goals; he is this team's star player...
In one word, he has, I don't know, I think he has scored 205 goals in 205 games. Cristiano is the world's best forward. The competition for attacking places in the team is huge. We have excellent players. We have creativity, lots of attacking play… With the arrivals of Isco and Bale, the addition of Jesé and the progress made by Morata the competition is even greater than last year. Some players have responded very strongly, with an urge to fight for their place such as Di María, who always wears his heart on his sleeve. Not everyone has reacted in the same way. Özil, who is a sensational player and who has given a lot to Real Madrid, decided to leave. I wish him all the best at Arsenal.
You mentioned Isco. Is he really that good?
Everyone can see it. He is very good. He is a spectacular player. He is what Real Madrid probably needed in the centre of the field. I think that he is a player that will bring a lot; he will be successful at Real Madrid and he is extremely important for Real Madrid as things stand.
Another man who is working hard to overcome his physical knocks is Illarramendi, who has also created quite a stir.
I also think he will be an important player. It's a pity that he has not been part of the pre-season with the others, but he is slowly starting to get involved in the group dynamics and he will be better very soon.
There's a lot of competition in attack, as in all areas of the team...
That is the case. It is extremely important for the team. We have two exceptional goalkeepers. Iker and Diego are both fantastic. We have the utmost confidence in them both. And the other area that I wanted to mention is in defence. We have a few injuries but all our defenders are top players.
Where would you fit in on the pitch?
En el campo no tengo sitio, lo siento. Con mis amigos, en mi casa, sí, pero este año en este equipo no tengo sitio, lo siento.