Rueda de prensa de Courtois

Courtois: "We're playing really well and are going to fight on all fronts"

NEWS | 12/02/2019 | Alberto Navarro (Amsterdam)

"Ajax are a good side and we know that it won't be an easy game", explained the goalkeeper.
Thibaut Courtois took his place in the media room at the Johan Cruyff Arena ahead of Santiago Solari's press conference to preview the Champions League last-16 meeting with Ajax: "I sense that our opponents now feel as if it's far harder to beat us. In October, we put in a poor performance, lost a game at home but now people can see that we're playing well and there's a greater fear there. We're here to fight on all fronts, to reach the Copa del Rey final, battle for the LaLiga title until the final matchday and the Champions League too".

"The most important thing is that when we defend, we defend as a team, and that when we attack, we attack as a team. We play with discipline, everyone knows their jobs and that's our strength. When you play for Real Madrid, you're in with a chance of winning everything going. That comes with the territory".

"I know a lot about Ajax. They're a very good side, they've bought Blind and Tadic, who are experienced players and they've also got some good, talented players, like Ziyech, De Ligt, De Jong… They play good football, get the ball down and you've got to be very wary of them. They showed in their Champions League game against Bayern just what a good side they are. They'll make things really tough for us and we'll have to be focused. We've got a lot of experience, we'll have to give our all and I don't think that it's going to be an easy game, nor do I think that any of our players will be expecting it to be an easy game".

VAR system
"I like the VAR. The experiences at the World Cup were really good and all of the countries were in favour. At the World Cup everything worked really well. Sometimes there's a lack of knowledge about the rules, the VAR has to intervene when there's a clear error and people don't always realise that. It has to be used to help the game. Sometimes it'll go against you when an offside is given that wasn't an offside and that has been given in your favour and other times the opposite will happen. The VAR is a good thing when it comes to making the game fairer".

When you play for Real Madrid, you're in which a chance of winning everything going.

"In Rome, we faced a team that wanted to play out from the back and when we applied the high press, the goalkeeper has to be wary and play further up the pitch. I got it right in Rome, it's also risky to come out of your area because if you get it wrong, you can end up making a mistake and that's always tough for a goalkeeper, but it's good for the team when we get to press higher up and as a goalkeeper, you've got to help out at the back".

Can you win a fourth successive Champions League title?
"Yes, I think so. If each season you ask every team who are the favourites to win the Champions League final, virtually all of the players would say Real Madrid, because we've got an amazing team and experience. There are a lot of good teams in the competition and we need to take things step by step, starting with the Ajax game".

"In his recent games he's been unlucky, with them losing against Heracles and Feyernoord. Sometimes you end up conceding, that's the risk that a team that wants to play out from the back takes. Sometimes there are less risky passes and others are more dangerous, but he's a great goalkeeper and he's helped them to get where they are today".

"We've got to take things one game at a time, however boring and annoying that may sound, but we know that's always the way. You can't start thinking about the Copa del Rey semi-final return leg, because we haven't played Ajax yet and we then welcome Girona and go to Levante, which are always tough games. When we get towards the end of the season we'll look and see what chances we've got and let's hope that we're in the running for the three titles"