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RB Leipzig ace Dani Olmo talks Real Madrid, UCL, Bellingham, Modric, Kroos, Vinicius, Rodrygo



Photo by Maja Hitij/Getty Images

RB Leipzig midfielder Dani Olmo has admitted that in order to beat Real Madrid in the UEFA Champions League this season, his side needs to be 150% ready.

The Bundesliga team has been drawn against Los Blancos in the round of 16 of the continental championship and Olmo is of the idea that since they have defeated Madrid once in the competition, they can base their argument on the same.

It is to be remembered that both Madrid and Leipzig were potted in the same group during the 2022/23 season and during the away game in Germany, the team from the Spanish capital succumbed to a 2-3 defeat, with Josko Gvardiol, Christopher Nkunku and Timo Werner scoring for the Bundesliga team.

“We consider this as motivation. We have already reached the group stage in the last edition, and now in the direct elimination stage, it will be even more special,” Olmo told Marca.

Interestingly enough, none of the scorers from that game are now playing for Leipzig, with even Werner closing in on his move to Tottenham. When asked about the same, Olmo added,

“Our team has been renewed a lot. I would say it has been strengthened. We are doing well in the Bundesliga [fourth], in the Champions League… we are having a good year.”

Olmo’s motivation to face Real Madrid

While it is one thing that Leipzig will build their motivation around the previous season’s win, another thing Olmo pointed out was Madrid’s injury issues. Right now, the likes of Thibaut Courtois, David Alaba and Eder Militao are nursing injuries.

“This win tells me that it is possible, that Real Madrid is not an invincible team, although you have to be 150 percent ready to beat them. 

“But it is possible, and on top of that, they have some important injured players, like Courtois, Alaba, Militao, but Real Madrid is always Real Madrid,” he added.

RB Leipzig beat Real Madrid 3-2 last season. Photo by Maja Hitij/Getty Images

He also said that Leipzig will be true to their game regardless of where they play against Madrid.

“We will be faithful to what has made us get here. It is a tie to enjoy and only by being faithful to our game can we achieve the objective, which is to qualify for the quarterfinals.

“Madrid is what it is in Europe. We don’t need extra motivation to play at the Bernabéu. We will go to the limit.”

Olmo’s thoughts on Xabi Alonso and Jude Bellingham

Xabi Alonso’s meteoric rise has been well documented this season and Olmo joked that he would have no problem in Alonso joining Real Madrid as long as it does not hurt his team.

“What he is doing in the Bundesliga is remarkable. He is a great coach, just as he was a great player. I wish him the best, as long as it doesn’t harm us [laughs].”

On Bellingham, he said, “I already saw him in Dortmund as a differential player. His presence was noticeable. Here he played further back. In Madrid, he is scoring more goals. It is different.”

Lastly, he also explained how they will keep an eye on Madrid ahead of their outing, adding, “In static, they have top world players, like Kroos or Modric. Luka is one of my favourites. 

“And up top, they have fast players, who kill you in space, like ‘Vini’, Rodrygo… We have to be careful when we have the ball and when we don’t… and be attentive for the 90 minutes,” he added.

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Real Madrid News

Toni Kroos opens up on retirement decision – ‘I am sad at the moment’



Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

Real Madrid have the opportunity to make this a historic season by lifting their 15th UEFA Champions League title.

But even in the event Madrid gets their hands on the trophy, the conclusion of the season will leave a bittersweet feeling as Toni Kroos is set to depart the club.

The German midfielder was urged to continue plying his trade in the Spanish Capital for another season since his timeless quality is yet to fade away, but Kroos remained firm on his decision.

Kroos opens up about retirement

Now, reflecting on his imminent departure from the club he has played 464 games with, Kroos has opened up about how the decision came about and his thought process.

“I am sad at the moment. Something that defined me, that gave so much fun and gave me so many positive memories is coming to an end,” Kroos professed on his podcast.

Kroos plays his final home game for Real Madrid tomorrow. (Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images)

However, he claims there is a slight silver lining about the news becoming public, as there is no more pressure on him to constantly answer questions about his future and focus solely on finishing his career in the best way possible.

“I am happy that the news is out. It is a relief because a lot of people were speculating and I didn’t feel like answering questions about my future all the time,” Kroos claimed.

The veteran midfielder adds that retiring was never a clear-cut decision as his emotions fluctuated frequently.

“Retiring was never a 100-0 decision. The feelings swing in other directions, in the days at the end it was maybe a 80-20 or 70-30 decision. And that 30% is what makes you feel something,” he said.

Furthermore, Kroos reveals that he shared the news of his retirement to Ancelotti first and foremost, then relayed his decision to his teammates.

“I told Carlo [Ancelotti] first that I’m retiring. Then the club, then Luka [Modric], Fede [Valverde], Lucas [Vazquez]…” he exclaimed.

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