“The beginning was difficult, very difficult, because I was very young and very lonely in Madrid. I didn’t know the language. The first season was very complicated, but it also forced me to reflect and say: ‘This is not easy. I have talent, everything I need to succeed at this club, but I have to find out what I need to improve to keep growing. If I continue at the level I’m at now, I won’t succeed’.”
Who were your heroes when you were growing up?
“I would say my heroes are my father and my mother. Because they had a hard time, a really hard time. I didn’t have a football player as a role model. I’m not going to tell you that I always managed on my own, but coming from where I come from, I had to excel in something. At 15 or 16 I started to be inspired by Ronaldo, Zidane and others to learn, but I never said: ‘I want to be like him’.”