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Valverde, Rodrygo reflect on Atletico 1-2 Real Madrid: “We have responded on the field”



Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images

Real Madrid finally broke to jinx of playing Atletico Madrid away from home, this time beating their cross-town rivals 2-1 in what was a rather high-octane contest.

The white side of Madrid arrived in the contest on the back of one defeat and two draws against Atletico in their last three away league fixtures. As it turned out, the intensity Carlo Ancelotti’s men showed proved to be the difference as Los Blancos scored two goals inside the first half.

Rodrygo opened the scoring in the 18th minute followed by a goal from Federico Valverde in the 36th minute. This was the Uruguayan’s third consecutive goal as he took his tally to four across all competitions, justifying the target Carlo Ancelotti has set for the player.

Speaking after the match, the Uruguayan, who was recently named the Best Uruguayan Athlete of the year, appraised his attacking partners Vinicius Jr and Rodrygo, saying that the duo was ‘spectacular’.

“It was difficult for us to grab the ball from the start, we knew that they were going to put pressure on us, but with the minutes we came into play, we found spaces and Rodrygo and Vini were spectacular in creating chances,” he said. (h/t

“It’s one of the qualities I have, breaking lines driving. We knew that they turned a lot to one side to press and with a good drive we took advantage of the play to score the first.”

Valverde explained why Real didn’t go for scoring more goals in the second period, saying that sometimes you need some rest after going two goals up. “You always have to go for more. In the second part, we played a lot with the result,” explained the Uruguayan. 

“When you are two goals ahead, sometimes you rest a bit and it shouldn’t happen because if we had finished more plays, we could have scored the third and it hurt us. In the end, we ended up fitting in and went back,” he added.

The 24-year-old took a knock on the knee on the night. Speaking about it, he mentioned that he is absolutely fine and that there is nothing to worry about.

“I received a hit on the knee, it felt loose in a jump and a play, but as the minutes went by it went away. I’m fine and tomorrow I’ll go to the national team,” he said.

Meanwhile, another goalscorer, Rodrygo, opened up about several things, including the influence and absence of Karim Benzema. He said that despite being injured, the Frenchman is still a fundamental piece of the team and it’s simply impossible to replace him.

“It’s impossible to replace Karim, but I try and I’m doing well. It’s a new role because I don’t do Karim’s things. I do some different things and we have changed our play,” he added.

Rodrygo was on target again for Real Madrid (Photo by JAVIER SORIANO/AFP via Getty Images)

The 21-year-old, who has now scored three goals in four La Liga appearances, added that playing in a derby against Atletico Madrid was a special experience and that he is happy about his early scoring streak.

“The derby is special. I am very happy to have scored and helped in the victory. I had the confidence of the coach. What has changed is that last season I scored the goals at the end. Now I’ve started better and I want to continue like this until the end,” he said.

“It was a different match. The derbies are important, but today was different because of what happened this week. We have responded on the field. I’m happy to play well and have scored.”

Sunday’s win over Atletico was Real’s sixth successive win in the ongoing La Liga season. Heading into the international break, the defending La Liga champions are leading the chart with 18 points, two points ahead of second-placed Barcelona.

“We are happy with how we started the season. We have won all the games and now we are going to the national team with the break. We have to rest and come back better after going with the national team,” explained the Brazilian.

Rodrygo concluded with a simple statement on his compatriot Vinicius Jr, saying that playing alongside his countryman even in club football is an absolute pleasure.

“It’s a pleasure to play with Vini Jr. and it’s special that he’s there,” he concluded.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Mokgothu Leboko

    September 19, 2022 at 4:17 pm

    This boy Federico Valverde is playing a good football that has been a very scarce thing to see.what he impress me about,is to drive a ball from his half of field and endup making useful results about it,either helping to score or scoring himself.And I have in few occasions he would pass a loose ball which needs his teammates to read it but unfortunately they seem to be unaware of his intentions.
    Real Madrid need to take care of this player,he will make wonders in the future.If there could be players at Real Madrid who could run I n space most of clubs would suffer from the passes of Valverde.
    Keep it up Valverde,I like your play.

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Real Madrid News

Real Madrid midfielder set for a change in roles heading into the new season




(Photo by CHANDAN KHANNA/AFP via Getty Images

Federico Valverde, the dynamic midfielder for Real Madrid, is once again on the cusp of adapting to a new role under the guidance of coach Carlo Ancelotti, reports Mario Calderon for Mundo Deportivo

Valverde’s remarkable versatility has been a key asset for Real Madrid, allowing him to excel in various positions on the field. This adaptability has been crucial for the team, and it seems another transformation is on the horizon for the 25-year-old Uruguayan.

The team chances and so does Valverde

His potential shift in role comes amid changes within the team, notably the reassignment of the number ‘8’ shirt to Toni Kroos. 

The German midfielder’s responsibility for constructing the game will likely be shared among several players to ensure a seamless transition.

Here, Valverde’s ability to quickly grasp new concepts will be a significant advantage for both him and Ancelotti. Even during the current period, with many players still absent, Ancelotti is already strategizing on how to best integrate everyone into the team dynamics without compromising performance.

Federico Valverde might play a different role at Real Madrid next season. (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)

Marcelo Bielsa must be credited

Valverde’s recent experiences with the Uruguayan national team in the Copa America under coach Marcelo Bielsa have further honed his skills. 

Bielsa entrusted Valverde with the captain’s armband and deployed him in a deeper role, where he was responsible for initiating plays from the back alongside his teammate, PSG’s young pivot, Manuel Ugarte. 

This experience has enriched Valverde’s understanding of the game, adding another layer to his already impressive skill set.

As the new season approaches, Valverde will need to re-establish himself in whatever role Ancelotti deems fit—be it as a winger, a pivot, or even a full-back, a position he has previously played under former coach Zinedine Zidane. 

Regardless of where he is positioned, Valverde’s importance to the team is undeniable. His versatility, coupled with his ability to adapt quickly, makes him a pivotal player for Real Madrid’s upcoming campaign.

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