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Chus Mateo: “We're very hungry for more trophies”

NEWS STORY. 17/09/2023. Edu Bueno (Murcia)

“The team will be at 100% today because it's a final and we want to win it,” said Llull.

Chus Mateo and Sergio Llull spoke to the press ahead of this morning’s training session. The Real Madrid coach analysed the final against Unicaja (7pm CEST): “It will be a very tough match. It's a final and I hope we can play to the best of our ability. They're a very solid and compact unit, with good systems acquired from last year. They haven't made many changes and they play with a lot of purpose. They're a team that push you to the limit defensively and they'll make things very difficult for us in attack because they defend so well. They have a lot of resources in attack.”

“We're very hungry (for success). We haven't lost our hunger thanks to them (the players), and they're the ones who have ensured that this run and this desire to win will go on for years to come. For me, the ambition they show every day is very important. It's 11 Super Cup wins in a row but we're just one win short right now. The past doesn't count anymore. We won yesterday's game but that's it. Now there is only one game ahead of us and that's the one we have to win.”

Campazzo’s contribution
“He's a player who makes you feel like he's never left. He knows his teammates well, he knows me and we know a lot about each other, but above all the way he plays, his hunger, his desire every moment he is on the court, how he transmits the desire to win the ball back and all of that helps the team to maintain its hunger. He's a key player for us. It's still early days and there's still a lot of room for improvement. Yesterday we played well, but not extraordinarily well and we have to play well as a team. He was great yesterday but so were Deck, Musa, Tavares and others. Other days will be different, as they've been for a long time now.”

Deck’s involvement
“Yesterday he had a little knock at the back and we'll see if he's able to make a small effort to play today. Right now, I don't know if he's 100% out.”

“Ibon Navarro is smart and he's preparing his team to play in a final. Every game is different and now we have to approach a game that is for a trophy. It'll certainly be different to the Costa del Sol Tournament. We've had one more week of preparation and I hope it's been enough for us. We've also got some important players back and I hope that will be enough for us to play Unicaja and fight hard against them.”

Message for Pepe Domingo Castaño
“I'd like to send my condolences and sincerest regards to his family and praise him as a great communicator and a benchmark in sports radio.”

Llull: “I feel good physically”
“I'm sure it will be a very tough game, as it always is against Unicaja. They defend very aggressively, they set a lot of traps and we'll have to be very careful in those aspects.”

Level of the team
“The team obviously has room for improvement. We're just starting the season but I think the fact that we've only brought in Campazzo, who already knows how we work, plays in our favour. Yesterday, you could see the difference between the two teams. One team was more united than the other and that will help us to start the season strongly.”

“Playing in a final is motivating enough for us to try to win another trophy. What last year's Copa del Rey taught us is that Unicaja are a very dangerous team, that we have to respect them and we have that warning. The team will be at 100% today because it's a final and we want to win it.”

Individual aspect
“I feel good physically and that's important for me and to be able to help the team in whatever the coach asks of me. I'm looking forward to this season, just like my teammates are.”

Inside game
“We possibly have an advantage. With Tavares we have the advantage in the inside in every game. It could prove to be an advantage for us, but we have to be very good defensively, be aware of their counterattack, their three-point shots, their pick & roll. They're a team that have plenty of assets.”

Sixth consecutive final
“We take this tournament very seriously. It's the first trophy of the season and the team always starts the season with a lot of enthusiasm and drive. We're prepared, motivated and hope we can perform well this evening to try to win our first trophy.”