Ahead of Real Madrid’s second leg against Manchester City, a press conference was held at the Etihad. As always, Zinedine Zidane spoke at the press conference and his quotes can be found here, while Raphaël Varane also addressed the media.
The French centre-back was asked about the absence of his usual centre-back partner Sergio Ramos, who is suspended for the second leg, and he responded by insisting that the mentality shouldn’t change that much. Varane said: “We know we all have to have a good game to go through and that doesn’t change, even without Sergio. Sergio is very important for us, but we’re a group and we all have a role. I always try to help my teammates. I speak tactically with my teammates and that’s not going to change. To win a Champions League you need a strong group with many leaders.”
With Real Madrid trailing 2-1, they’ll need to score at least twice and Varane spoke about the need to attack. He said: “We’re playing a tough team who play well. We need to score and that’s never easy against a good team. We need to be offensive, while maintaining a balance. We’ll have to be efficient in both areas, as that’ll be the difference. We’ll fight to the end.”
Reflecting on the fact that 18 days have passed since Real Madrid’s last game, the trip to Leganés after they’d already won LaLiga Santander, Varane compared it to the lengthy preparation time he has experienced ahead of some Champions League finals in the past. “It’s a bit like when you prepare for finals, with more preparation days,” he said. “We’ve focused on many aspects of our play, trying to improve. We come into the match with confidence after the recent results and with more rest than if we’d played the match in March.”
Finally, Varane was asked how he feels on a personal level and if he feels that he is at the peak of his powers. “I hope not, I hope the best is still to come,” he said.