INTERVIEW | 21/08/2015"With this extension I'll continue to wear this shirt with great pride. Walking out at the Santiago Bernabéu and hearing the fans get behind you is massive", he explained.
In an interview with Realmadrid.com and Realmadrid TV, Pepe offered his initial impressions on signing a contract extension that ties him to the club until 30 June 2017. The Whites defender expressed his delight and pride at prolonging his sporting relationship with Real Madrid: "I feel the same desire and enthusiasm as I did when I arrived. With this extension I'll continue to wear this shirt with great pride. Walking out at the Santiago Bernabéu and hearing the fans get behind you is massive. Real Madrid have always been my first choice, because it's the club that I've always wanted to play for ever since I was little".
Thanks a lot. I'm really excited to have signed this contract extension through to 2017 with a club that I have huge affection for. When I go out and play, the fans can look forward to me giving my all to help my team-mates and this club. That's the most important thing.
You look happy.
I'm really pleased, because my aim was to be at Real Madrid and this contract extension means that I have achieved that aim. Before I joined Real Madrid I dreamed of being at this club, and when I signed my contract it was the greatest thing that could happen to me in my sporting life. With this extension I'll continue to wear this shirt with great pride and with the passion that I bring.
What does the daily experience of being a Real Madrid player mean to you?
It means everything to me. Spirit, humility, hard work, togetherness... I've learned a lot during my time at Real Madrid. It's a club that has given me everything and until 2017 I hope to give the fans a lot to shout about. We all want Real Madrid to be as successful as possible.
Having been at the club for so long now, what are your feelings when you pull on the Real Madrid shirt?
I feel very privileged as a player, because I'm aware of the importance of being at this club. All footballers want to be at Real Madrid, because it's the biggest and most decorated club in the world. I feel the same desire and enthusiasm as I did when I arrived. Walking out at the Santiago Bernabéu and hearing the fans get behind you is massive.
As you go into your ninth season at Real Madrid, you've already gone down in the club's history.
I'm very lucky to have been able to do my bit for the club. It's a club that has given me everything and one that I had always wanted to play for. I'm starting my ninth season here and I hope to maintain the standards of all the years that I've been here, so as to be able to give the fans plenty to shout about.
Can you remember what it was like to sign for the club?
That's something that no player ever forgets. Real Madrid have always been my first choice, because it's the club that I've always wanted to play for ever since I was little. Playing for Real Madrid had always been one of my aims, and when you receive the call from from this club, you feel a real sense of fulfilment. It doesn't get any bigger for a player than for a team like Real Madrid to come in for you.
What would you choose as your favourite moment of your time at Real Madrid?
There are so many, each with their own importance. Everyone had been waiting for 'La Décima' [Real Madrid's tenth European Cup] and it was a unique moment for us all because for the players, the club and the fans, it was important to be the first side to achieve that feat.
Do you feel the fans' love for you?
Yes, and I'd like to thank them for that. They have shown me a lot of love and have given me the encouragement to keep on fighting. In the toughest moments, they give us the encouragement to keep on fighting and that helps us to tackle everything we come up against.
What are you like in the dressing room?
I'm someone who helps everyone. I treat people the way I'd like them to treat me.
How do manage to maintain the levels of consistency that you've shown at Real Madrid?
By bringing the same sense of enthusiasm as on my first day. Being here is a privilege and I have to give my all in each and every training session. We have to look to improve at all times, because there's always scope for us to perform better. That's the way you have to think, and I try to do that.