REAL MADRID defender RAPHAEL VARANE chats about playing for the biggest club in the world!

Who did you look up to after joining the club in 2011?

VARANE SAYS: “I looked up to players such as Pepe and Sergio Ramos, because they played as defenders, and also players like Cristiano Ronaldo, who is an example for any player. I learned a lot from them, the rest as well, but especially from them.”

How much has Sergio Ramos helped you develop?

VARANE SAYS: “You learn a lot from him, especially his winning mentality. Sergio’s always in a good mood with the will to win. That teaches you a lot. He’s experienced and always very motivated. Every day you learn something from a player like Sergio.”

Do you feel the pressure of playing for Real Madrid?

VARANE SAYS: “The pressure is as huge as it can get. That’s why not all footballers can play at a club like Real Madrid. The club and fans demand that we always play at our best. You need to have the right mentality to be able to perform to your best week in, week out.”

What was it like winning your first Champions League in 2014?

VARANE SAYS: “It was a dream! I felt a lot of pressure playing in such an important game, but I enjoyed it and it’s a beautiful memory. On top of that, it was special because we won. It was a massive joy and there were so many emotions involved that I never thought I could experience!”

After winning so many trophies, is it difficult to keep that hunger?

VARANE SAYS: “When you live all that, you’re even more eager to live it again. You always want to prove that you can compete and play for the best trophies in football. Everything I have won is much more than I ever expected and dreamed of!”

How has Eden Hazard settled during his first season at Real?

VARANE SAYS: “He’s adapting well – all of the new signings brought in competition and quality. He’s very talented and gifted with the ball. I already knew him but, seeing him daily, it’s a pleasure to play with him. He’s a player that makes a difference!”

How would you rate Real’s season so far?

VARANE SAYS: “We’re growing gradually, but I believe that’s normal after what we went through last season, and because of our start. The team’s now more confident and we’re playing better. We hope to keep on growing until the end of the season, which is when everything is at stake!”

What’s the main goal this season for Real Madrid?

VARANE SAYS: “As always, we want to win it all, that’s the goal, but the important thing is to focus on the game ahead and give your best in order to get to the end of the season with the chance to win titles. Each year here is a massive challenge!”

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