Vinicius: "Zidane told me he never listens to people on the outside"
Brazilian forward Vinicius feels he made the right move joining Real Madrid: "In three months in Madrid, I progressed more than a year in Brazil".
Vinicius feels he made the right move in moving from Flamengo to Real Madrid and in an interview with Jornal Extra, said it didn't take too long for him to noticed a vast improvement to his own game after just a short time in Europe.
Zidane has returned to the coaching post at Real Madrid. What kinds of have you spoke to him about? "He has told me to keep working hard because I'm still only young. And he doesn't listen to anyone on the outside; he'll listen to my family and the people at the club but no one else. With him there and with the other players, I'm sure I'll improve as a player".
Has watching Neymar's career served to warn you about the risks of fame? "You have to be careful in everything you do and I think people know that. But I don't know what really happened with him. He's someone who I admire quite a lot".
How has your life changed since you moved to Madrid? "It's completely changed, everything has changed".
What was the biggest change? "Everyone wants a piece of me, a lot of people want to be seen with me and my family".
Your career in football meant you missed out on going out at night with friends. Now you have money and fame, will you be making up got lost time? "A little, but having my family with me at home... I enjoy being with my family. Having my friends come back to my place makes things easier too".
You left Brazil last year. Do you think you make the move at the right moment? "In my case, I think it was the right time. I was playing well for Flamengo but I also had margin to improve. I evolved more in three months in Madrid there than I would have in a year back home. It was good for me to start and then play in the best club in the world".
Why do you think you evolved quicker over in Madrid? "Training is different. Most of the training sessions there are better than the actual games. And in training, no one wants to lose, all of the players want to improve every day. There are players like Sergio Ramos and Benzema who, even though they're over 30, train harder than everyone else. The inspiration you get from being next to the best players also helps, that makes you grow".
The Champions League must have been another level again? "Yes, it's a totally different kind of football. You need to get it straight in your head that if you lose the ball, that's all the opponents need to score a goal".
Is that the case with some of the smaller Spanish clubs? "Yes, and especially last season when we didn't play well. It doesn't matter who your rivals are. In Europe, one mistake is all that's needed to give away a goal".
Sergio Ramos seems to be the big leader at Real Madrid, is that the case? "He was born to do that job - he knows the right moment to talk to you, help you. Him, Marcelo, Varane, Modric… all of them help the rest of the squad".
What was it like joining Real Madrid in the post-Cristiano era? "Cristiano is Cristiano, he's a club legend. He did what no one has ever done. But I've never felt as though I am replacing him. I want to play and help Madrid”.
What else do you need, apart from football talent, to succeed at Real Madrid? "Personality".