REAL MADRID

Valverde on the time his mother changed his nappy at half-time

The Uruguayan spoke to Real Madrid TV about his relationship with Zidane, Lopetegui and Solari along with some anecdotes about his childhood.

Fede Valverde, jugador del Real Madrid.
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Fede Valverde has rejuvenated Real Madrid's midfield this season and RealMadrid TV featured the player in their "Field of Stars" programme where he spoke about his relationship with Zidane, his love for Real Madrid and the time his mother had to change his nappy during a game.

He says he is called 'El Pajarito' - The Little Bird - because he was always flying around the field when he was younger but nowadays he prefers Fede.

"My home was very humble," he says. "And my family were fighters. My mother always taught me that if you take the right path, you will always get to where you are going. After school, I was always going to play on the street with my friends, my obsession was to play football on the street. I would give anything now to have an afternoon like that and the chance to play on the street."

"It was lovely to put on the jersey and play with my friends," he says. "I ran around the field like crazy. I don't remember the moment that my mother changed my nappy so I could keep playing the game but my mother always says it (his mother tells a story about him playing with a nappy when he was small and in the middle of the game, pulling him aside and taking off the nappy)."

He says his days as a teenager were always the same: "Train, go home, play football, hang out with my friends, play the PlayStation..."

"When Madrid asked about me, it was a crazy day," he says . "I was in the room and they called me to go to another room, telling me that Madrid wanted me. I wanted to be calm but it was Madrid...I couldn't believe when they came and told me that they were interested in me. It's so nice, amazing when you go to a team you've dreamed of. It was incredible."

On his relationships with Zidane, Solari and Lopetegui

"I was out of the Uruguayan national team and I was training alone waiting for the chance to stay at Madrid or go somewhere else. They told me Julen Lopetegui wanted to see me in the United States. I went with a lot of hope and all of the desire in the world. Julen helped me a lot, he gave me the confidence I needed," he says.

"He helped me a lot," says Valverde about Santiago Solari. "Having this South American contact helped me as we had a lot in common and he made me feel comfortable. It was a difficult year."

He says, however, that "there are no words to describe Zidane."

"He just comes to say hello to you and you learn from him," he said. "It's incredible that he tells you he has confidence in you."