Real Madrid: Vinicius rules out January loan departure
Vinicius Júnior is fighting tooth and nail to prove himself to Zinedine Zidane and is not interested in leaving in the winter transfer window.
Vinicius Júnior's Real Madrid career has gone backwards since Zinedine Zidane's return to the Bernabéu dugout. Having been the 10th-most used player at the LaLiga club under Zidane's predecessor, Santiago Solari, the 19-year-old has had to settle for a significantly more marginal role under the Frenchman.
Vinicius has no interest in Real Madrid loan exit
However, this state of affairs has not changed the forward's intentions: he is determined to be a success at Madrid and is currently ruling out the possibility of a loan departure in the January transfer window.
In the eight months since his re-appointment as Madrid head coach, Zidane has made it abundantly clear that he is not Vinicius' number-one fan. After the Brazilian's recovery from the ankle injury he suffered in the Champions League exit to Ajax in March, 'Zizou' was in absolutely no rush to bring him back into the team at the end of last season, despite the player's efforts to return to fitness ahead of schedule. His lack of playing time ahead of the Copa América scuppered his chances of making Brazil's squad for the tournament. Things have not particularly improved this term, either - but Vinicius is refusing to panic.
Brazilian staying patient and working on finishing
With his close circle supporting him every step of the way, the Flamengo youth product is concentrating all his efforts on coming through his current situation. Firstly, he is focusing on improving his finishing, putting in hours of extra shooting sessions at Madrid's Valdebebas training ground - at times under Zidane's supervision - and watching videos that offer him pointers on aspects such as body shape and where best to strike the ball.
Secondly, Vinicius is at pains to stay patient. He is in no doubt that the impact he had last season was no fluke and that, as soon as he can get a run of games under his belt, he'll rediscover the form that led Madrid midfielder Casemiro to say of his compatriot: "Together with Karim Benzema, he was our best player last year."
Vinicius aware ups and downs par for course at his age
Vinicius is mindful of the fact that it is normal for a player of his age to experience ups and downs - particularly at such a big club - as he bids to turn around figures that confirm his lower status at Madrid this term. Despite escaping the injury plague that has hit Zidane's squad since the summer, he is only the 13th-most used player - and while fellow Brazilian teenager Rodrygo Goes has become an increasingly important first-team figure in recent times, Vinicius has started just one of Madrid's last four games, missing out on the squad altogether against Granada and Leganés.
However, he has certainly not lost confidence in himself, or in his ability to make a success of his Real Madrid career. In the summer, he rejected approaches from several clubs - even asking not to be told about any offers that came in - and most notably ignored the interest of Paris Saint-Germain, who tried as many as three times to include him in a possible deal to take Neymar to the Bernabéu. Vinicius is committed to Madrid, and leaving is not in his thoughts.
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