Raul De Tomas is one of the best strikers in La Liga. Despite playing for a recently promoted side in Espanyol, the former Real Madrid player has already bagged 7 goals in the league. RDT has consistently been a goal threat, regardless of the team he plays for, even back in his Rayo Vallecano days he bagged 38 goals for the club in 65 appearances — nearly a goal every other game. The good performances have not gone unnoticed and Luis Enrique has decided to call up the 27-year-old to the senior Spain squad. Having played for Spain at the U16-U19 levels, RDT will finally have the chance to debut as a full international.
In an interview with AS, RDT delved into his excitement being with Spain squad and the influence of his Madridista past.
“I am very proud to be here because every footballer wants to be with his national team and I have fulfilled that wish.”
In the Spanish National team there are many from the Real Madrid’s youth system, do you notice that connection?
“Yes, it shows. When we arrived at the training camp, we all reminisced on that stage of life in the Madrid youth squad. We were even together at school, at the SEK in Villanueva de la Cañada, where we from the cantera all lived and studied. I was at the SEK with Pablo Sarabia and Álvaro Morata.”
Does this Spain team have the DNA of La Fábrica given the inclusion of Carvajal, Morata, Sarabia, RdT…?
“Yes, exactly. We were young boys and went on to fulfill a dream and now we are here together in the National Team.”
Raúl de Tomás was going to be the 9 of Real Madrid, at what moment did that go wrong? Do you regret something?
“When we are young we make mistakes, we believe things that we are not, we want to go faster than we have to go. Now, when I see boys of 16, 17 and 18 years old, I wonder if I was like that. I think they are wrong and maybe I was wrong at that age. It is a period that you have to go through and you must learn, and when you are 27 years old you realize that you should not have done certain things. The problem would be doing those things at 27 years old. I don’t regret it, but I did learn from the mistakes I made, which didn’t help me to play for Real Madrid. But I had the opportunity to be there and decided to go out to play elsewhere.”
Could you return to Real Madrid?
“I focus on the day to day and you never know. I have grown up since I was little in Madrid, since I was 8 years old and you never know.”
Are you still dreaming of succeeding at Madrid, succeeding at the Bernabéu?
“A good question. Sure I would. It is a dream to return to Madrid because I grew up there, from the age of 8 I entered through the door of the Real Madrid Sports City. Everyone has that dream of going back to where you grew up. Why not? You never know.”
Who did you turn to and learn from? Cristiano, Benzema, both?
“I have seen them both and I have seen Zidane, who was my idol as a child. I did not play in his position, but I really liked the class he had, how he played football, how he associated with the ball. Zidane was like Benzema, but in the center of the field. I have noticed many players because the important thing is to learn from everyone and take things from each one.”
Will you wear RdT on your Spain shirt?
Why did you decide to wear RdT on your shirt?
“I was with a friend in the car and he asked me what I was going to wear on my shirt when I arrived at Rayo Vallecano. And I told him the usual: ‘R. De Tomás’ and he told me that with that name he was not going to buy the shirt. And he proposed to me to put RdT. And I thought it sounded good and since then I’ve been wearing RdT on my shirt.”