Raul De Tomas spoke at length with Spanish publication, AS, on his current season, his future, and his past through the Real Madrid youth ranks.
The following has been translated from Spanish to English (for the full interview in Spanish, click here):
Q: You put in a lot of work to be at Real Madrid as a young player:
A: I will always be grateful to Real Madrid because I am who I am thanks to them both professionally and personally. They also gave me the chance to be an intern at a school for five years. That changed my life, I had a difficult childhood, like many players, in a tough Madrid neighborhood. Thanks to Real Madrid, my life changed. I went from being in a bad place to another where I was protected by the club and that’s what made me change, thanks to Madrid and my parents.
Q: Zidane has always been your idol and he was clear in the potential he saw in you while at Castilla...
A: I wish I could get the thorn from out of my side from that year. Things did not go well because of the pressure I put on myself for having Zidane as coach.
Q: During the last few years, you have played many minutes and was a protagonist in other teams.. you now comeback with significant experience:
A: With time you learn, mature, and get better... in these three years I have been away from Madrid, I have changed quite a bit. I am no longer the player I was when I left the Cantera. Life has taught me a lot.
Q: Would you like to triumph and be successful with Real Madrid?
A: Man, of course! I have said it before, and I will say it again, I hope that one day I can complete that dream. Any player would want to play for Real Madrid... imagine what it feels like for someone who spent 8 years in the youth academy!
Q: Last summer Lopetegui counted on you, but you wanted to have minutes and continue developing. If those circumstance were to come again, would you maintain the same idea?
A: Yes. I recently read or heard that I demanded minutes. I want to clarify that statement, I have never demanded anything. I would be embarrassed to demand anything. I am not like that, all I want is an opportunity and a chance to win my spot, like I have done elsewhere. Nothing more. The future will decide what happens. I always give my best. If the coach decides he wants me to stay, I’ll stay. If not, I will have to go out and find a team and my new life, like I have done before.
Q: In our last interview [AS], you predicted the return of Zidane.
A: I am not the only one who thought that. After all that he achieved, he was the biggest name on the table. Of course, I did not expect it to be so soon. When things are not going well, you need to bring back those with whom you did well. Zidane was the change that Madrid needed. This year they have not had luck, and the poor run of results kept coming. Next year they will win titles. It will go hand in hand with Zidane’s return.
Q: Who is the best striker in the world?
A: Benzema. There isn’t anyone like him. People always expect goals from strikers, but he is not only goals. Other “nines” without goals, do not posses as much quality as Benzema. He is the complete striker.
Raul De Tomas has been one of the top performing loan players this season and has proven he has the quality to play for Real Madrid. Whether he will be granted that opportunity is not yet clear, but there is no doubting his affection and appreciation for the club and Zidane.