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‘Winning is what Real Madrid demands’ – Rudiger, Vinicius, Camavinga speak ahead of UCL final

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Photo by OSCAR DEL POZO/AFP via Getty Images

Today happens to be the UEFA open media day at Real Madrid ahead of this weekend’s UEFA Champions League finals against Borussia Dortmund in London.

As part of the media day, Real Madrid stars, Antonio Rudiger, Vinicius Jr., and Eduardo Camavinga, spoke to the club’s official channels to discuss the upcoming match and what they are expecting from it.

Rudiger on what it means to play for Real Madrid

Rudiger, who is in his second season as a Real Madrid player, outlined what it meant to play for the club and the demands that come with it, saying:

“For me, it’s very important to have good energy in the dressing room. Playing for this club is a dream come true. I try to enjoy it and that’s why I try to show my best version.

“Winning is what Real Madrid demands. All the best players want to come here and play these games.”

On facing his former team Dortmund in the UCL finals on Sunday, Rudiger remarked: “It will be a difficult game, it’s a final. They will be very well prepared, they are very dangerous on the counter-attack and in strategic plays.

“We have to be in good shape, be disciplined and score one more goal than them. We must not underestimate any of our opponents.”

Vinicius Jr. ready for a crucial week

Vinicius Jr., who is a strong contender to win the Ballon d’Or this year, insisted that this week was one of the most important ones of the season, saying:

“It’s a very important week and hopefully we can win again. We always think about winning. Hopefully, I can score, but the most important thing is to win. It’s a unique game and we have to start strong from the beginning.

“We’ve only lost two games and hopefully we can finish the season like this.”

Vinicius, Camavinga can’t wait for the UCL final. (Photo by JAVIER SORIANO/AFP via Getty Images)

On his own game, the Brazilian added: “I’ve never been afraid of losing the ball and that’s what got me here. Not every player can wear this shirt or train with these legends. The togetherness of this team makes us happy.

On facing Dortmund, Vinicius remarked: “The German players are always difficult and they are very close to me, but we’ll see what the coach prepares to do the best.”

Camavinga looking forward to the UCL final

Meanwhile, Eduardo Camavinga stated that he could not wait for the day to come, unable to contain his excitement to play in the UCL final.

“I just want it to be Saturday already to play these kind of matches. We always want more and we want to win the final. We are playing in a mythical stadium, but I just want to win,” he said.

Discussing the team’s preparation for the Dortmund encounter, he added: “We have more concentration because it’s a final. During this week we are going to do everything to prepare for the final. We have a strong team and with good players it is easier to play.

“I thank the fans for their support and we want to win the 15th for you.”

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Real Madrid News

How Real Madrid can cope with Brahim Diaz’s AFCON leave

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Photo by JOSE JORDAN/AFP via Getty Images

Real Madrid will face a significant challenge in the middle part of the 2025/2026 season.

The 2025 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) is set to take place in Morocco from December 21, 2025, to January 18, 2026, which could lead to the temporary loss of one of their key players, Brahim Diaz.

Brahim Diaz, an integral part of Real Madrid’s squad, is likely to be called up to represent Morocco in the tournament.

Under FIFA regulations, Real Madrid cannot refuse to release him for international duty. His potential absence could create a void in the squad during a crucial part of the season.

Diaz, whose contract with Real Madrid runs until 2027, has been a standout performer. In the recently concluded season, the 24-year-old scored 12 goals and provided 9 assists in 44 appearances for Los Blancos.

His contributions have been vital to the team’s success, and his absence will certainly be felt.

Three potential solutions for Real Madrid

To mitigate the impact of Diaz’s potential absence, Real Madrid could look to other talents within their squad. One promising option is Arda Güler, often referred to as the “Turkish Pearl.”

In his debut season with Real Madrid, the 19-year-old showcased his abilities despite having a relatively reserved role for most of the campaign.

Güler’s prominence increased towards the end of the season, especially after Real Madrid had already secured the league title. He finished the season with 6 goals in 12 appearances, demonstrating his potential to step up when needed.

Güler’s ability to play in advanced midfield positions and his knack for scoring could make him a suitable replacement for Diaz during the AFCON period.

This opportunity could also accelerate the player’s development, providing him with more significant playing time and a chance to solidify his place in the team.

Another option for Real Madrid would be to make a signing in the summer of 2025 to cater for Brahim’s vacancy.

Currently, the name of Germany and Leverkusen ace Florian Wirtz has been mentioned as a possibility for Real Madrid in a year.

His versatility and vision on the ball make him a good option to replace Brahim Diaz in the squad.

Lastly, with the absence of signings, Real Madrid can look into their youth side and call up Nico Paz to the first team for the one month Brahim Diaz will be out for.

The 19-year-old scored 11 goals and 4 assists in the just-ended season, with one of the goals coming in the UEFA Champions League against Napoli when he had his chance in the first team.

He has the vision, drive, and skillset that make him a like-for-like replacement for Brahim Diaz.

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