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Ferland Mendy: “La Liga’s speed of play is the key difference over Ligue 1”

The left back spoke to RM TV about his adjustment to the club

Real Madrid v Manchester City - UEFA Champions League Round of 16: First Leg Photo by Diego Souto/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

Ferland Mendy has proven himself as a formidable defensive player after arriving from Lyon in Ligue 1 this past summer. After nearly eight months at the club, the Frenchman spoke to RMTV about his adaptation to Real Madrid as well as some of the key differences between the game in Spain and France.

On meeting Zidane: “The first time I met Zidane we spoke and he welcomed me, he told me I was part of his team and that I needed to show my worth, which says it all.”

Understanding with Benzema: “I talk to Karim a lot, he advises me on many things and tells me where he wants the ball. I understand Benzema well both on and off the pitch. I try to do everything possible to supply him with the ball.”

That assist vs Atletico Madrid: “I cut inside to free up Vini. He got the ball and ran deep to pass it back to me. I then saw Karim lose to his man. I saw him before I made the cross and knew what to do. We all know how Karim likes to get the ball there so it went perfectly.”

La Liga vs Ligue 1: “The difference is the level is higher here. We work hard in training to reach our peak and show it in every game. I think we play faster on the ball over here— there is more movement, more running, that is the key difference between La Liga and Ligue 1.”

Adaptation to Madrid: “When you come to a new club it’s hard to hit the ground running, but I think that I’m improving with each game, and I want to reach my peak to give more in attack. Right now I’m more focused on defending well than going forward.”

El Clasico: “My first El Clásico was special. I had played at the Camp Nou prior to that game, but wearing the Real Madrid shirt, everything is different. El Clásico is like no other game out there, we all want to win this game.”