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Fede Valverde, Nacho react after Osasuna 0-2 Real Madrid: “Knew how to suffer together”



Photo by Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images

The spirits are high in the Real Madrid dressing room after sealing a hard-fought 2-0 win over Osasuna on Saturday night. After all, it required a combined effort from all of Carlo Ancelotti’s squad members to guarantee the Merengues three points against a well-oiled opposition.

Following the high-intensity clash, Federico Valverde and Nacho Fernandez faced the press and spoke about various aspects of the game in depth including the altercation between Vinicius Jr and Moi Gomez. Here are the snippets of the goalscorer and the captain’s media interaction.

Valverde began his conversation with the media with a description of the gruelling ninety minutes the team had to endure in Pamplona. Further, he maintained that El Sadar is never an easy stadium to play at.

“We knew it was a tough game. They always fight until the end on their home turf. They always look for long balls and sometimes it’s hard to find space. As the minutes went by, the fatigue of the numerous games we’ve played this season also began to take their toll.”

After 78 hard-fought minutes, it was Valverde’s goal that blew the tie wide open and gave the visitors the lead. Speaking about his goal and the team’s performance, he said:

“I think the goal I scored opened up the game and that’s when we found the spaces a lot more. We are happy with all the work from our teammates and for the humility they displayed in the match. We knew it was very difficult and we knew how to suffer together.”

Ancelotti initially set a ten-goal target for the midfielder which he achieved in Real Madrid’s win in the Club World Cup final. Valverde then revealed that the target had now doubled, although he doubted if it was feasible for him to breach that number.

“I’ve been told that I can reach 20 goals, I think they’ve gone too far with that number though. I try to do my best and obviously scoring is a great boost to your morale. Playing on the outside you always have a very close marker and I try to play one-on-one, but it’s not my strong point.”

The 24-year-old began the season as a midfielder under Ancelotti. However, he has been pushed to the right wing in recent games and has done phenomenally well in the foreign position. Commenting on his preferred position, he explained:

“Being in the middle I can get closer to the area, sometimes the midfielders don’t follow you one hundred percent. I have to find my spaces and take advantage of them, like I did for the goal. That’s what the coach asks me to do.”

Ancelotti is well known as one of the best coaches in the world for bringing the best out of his players. Valverde stood by the same fact and elaborated on how Ancelotti’s mind games with him were instrumental to his success.

“I’d like to thank Ancelotti for that pressure he’s put on me, even if it’s just a little game between the two of us. In my mind, it plays a part in my decision-making. I would often find other options to pass because

“I didn’t have the confidence to go for goal. Now, the first thing I do is look towards goal. I know 80% can find the back of the net so I definitely look to score more these days.”

Nacho Fernandez started the game with the captain’s armband and played as a right-back for the 75 minutes that he was on the field. Going up against Barcelona loanee Ez Abde, the veteran faced a stiff challenge and explained the frustration the game had in store for him when he spoke to the media.

“It was a tough game. We knew it would be like this at a tough place to come, but we’ve taken three big points to stay in the fight. I was shown a yellow card for dissent, silly things that I should have avoided. Sometimes the tension of the match gets to you.”

Nacho then went on to share his thoughts on the duel between Vinicius Jr and Moi Gomez that saw both players earn yellow cards. Speaking on the verbal altercation, the defender said:

“As I said before, it’s in the heat of the moment. They squared up to each other a bit and they were both shown yellow cards. These things happen in a tight game.”

Source: Real Madrid official website

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Real Madrid News

Real Madrid’s dodgy UCL knockouts record against Pep Guardiola ahead of Man City clash



Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images

With PSG and Borussia Dortmund securing berths in the Champions League semifinals, it is now time for Real Madrid, Manchester City, Arsenal and Bayern Munich to battle it out for the two remaining places.

Man City and Real Madrid will certainly be the headline encounter, with the two teams looking for a win at the Etihad in order to secure a ticket for the semis.

There is much confidence and optimism in the Real Madrid camp heading into this encounter, with Vinicius Junior, in particular, determined to beat the Premier League champions.

Real Madrid’s shoddy record against Guardiola

Real Madrid, though, must approach this game with pragmatism and can’t be too overconfident about their chances.

The Pep Guardiola factor, in particular, will resonate fear in the Real Madrid camp, especially considering the club’s shoddy record against the Catalan coach.

Guardiola strikes fear into Real Madrid hearts (Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

Indeed, Guardiola is the coach who has been able to eliminate Real Madrid more than anyone else in the Champions League – three times.

The first elimination came in 2011 when Guardiola was in charge of Barcelona. Guardiola was not able to eliminate Real Madrid during his time at Bayern Munich, but at Man City, he has eliminated Los Blancos twice – in 2020 and 2023.

Now, Guardiola is looking to extend his record by eliminating Real Madrid fourth time.

Guardiola vs Real Madrid

As far as Guardiola’s overall record against Real Madrid is concerned, the Catalan mastermind has played against Los Blancos 24 times, recording 13 victories.

Guardiola has lost against Real Madrid only five times and only one of them came during his tenure at Manchester City – in 2022.

Overall, at Man City, Guardiola has been able to best Real Madrid four times in seven encounters.

However, Guardiola’s men will be coming up against a Real Madrid side which has indicated many times in the past that records do not matter. As such, past records should only be taken with a grain of salt as the two teams lock horns at Etihad tonight.

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