REAL MADRID

Varane: “I’ve spoken with Zidane and I’m staying”

The French centre-back rubbished reports of a potential move away: “I’m happy at Madrid and the best is yet to come.”

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Varane: “I’ve spoken with Zidane and I’m staying”
PEPE ANDRES DIARIO AS

Real Madrid may be away in North America on a pre-season tour preparing for the upcoming season but, as always, transfer rumours are never far behind.

French centre-back Raphael Varane sat down with the press this afternoon in Montreal to discuss his future amid rumours of a move away from the club, as well as his teammates and the club’s summer signings.

“I’ve spoken with Zidane and I’ve decided to stay,” he said. “I feel loved by the club and the fans, they treat me as if I’d been here all my life… I want to give everything I possibly can. I feel the best is yet to come.”

Varane will be hoping to impress Zidane and re-establish himself in the Real Madrid starting XI this season.

Varane, now in his sixth season at the Bernabéu, was displaced from the starting XI towards the end of the last season with Zidane preferring to pair Pepe with captain Sergio Ramos. He remains confident in his ability, however.

“In life you take decisions,” he said. “I’m happy here and I want to stay here for a long time. I could never have imagined what I’ve achieved here, to have played so much and to have won so many trophies. I want to continue playing here; it’s an honour to wear the shirt.

Varane was also asked about Karim Benzema and his state of mind ahead of the new season after missing out on the European Championships in France. “Karim is really focused on getting match fit. He’s happy and really keen to start playing again,”

He was, however, reluctant to say much when pressed on the prospect of teaming up with Paul Pogba next season. “He’s a friend of mine and of course we’ve spoken about it,” he said. “He’s an amazing player but I don’t know what he’ll do. That’s up to him. All I can say is that we have a great team and that ultimately it’s the club’s decision. I can’t say much more than that.”