“I’m not a footballer to make friends”

He has only been at Real Madrid for a few months but with only that short space of time Antonio Rudiger It has caught the attention of the white fans. Between other reasons, for his personality. The last test is the second part of the interview that the Madrid central defender has done on the German channel Sport1. After a first installment in which he revealed a juicy anecdote with Carlo Ancelotti, in this one he offers revealing details about how he understands football, his job as a centre-back, his tricks to win the mental battle against his rivals and his critical view of the election of Qatar as the venue for the World Cup…

Rüdiger says that a large part of her success is insulating herself from outside pressure and being a bit stubborn. “Since I was a child my parents called me ‘Warrior’, because if there is a wall, I will crash into it ten times but I will end up going through it”, explains the defender. Do you like to polarize the world between fans and haters? “I didn’t become a professional footballer to be everyone’s friend. I know I can’t be liked by everyone. I like to be awkward.”.

Does your impulsive nature sometimes cause you problems?

-Ma happened at the beginning of my career, it cost me several red cards at Stuttgart. My family got me out of it. They wanted to send me to talk to someone, but it’s the wrong way to approach me, I don’t like talking to strangers about my feelings. I have already matured a lot. Because of my age and because of my children. I have more sense of responsibility.


Rüdiger argues with Werner in the match against Leipzig.Rodrigo JimenezEFE

-There is still something of the old Rüdiger, right?

-Here I am. I love it and I need to play mind games with my rivals, also use the trash talk. It’s fun. I like to analyze my rivals and think about how they will react if I provoke them a bit. It is not that he chooses them before the games, it happens spontaneously.

Does it look a bit like a showman?

-Totally! In the end, football is entertainment. Y you’re not going to see me dribble past five or six like Vinicius. I do it differently.

Are you in the best form of your career?

I have reached my peak. I’m really enjoying this phase. I can say that I feel complete as a footballer.

“The World Cup in Qatar shows that money plays a crucial role in the world of football”

Rudiger, in Sport1

-Do you feel the excitement of the World Cup?

Sure, it’s the goal. But I see other countries ahead at the moment. I’m not hiding and I’m not going to go around saying that we’re the big favourites. Covering paper may not be bad. France and Brazil have very good individualities. They are a little ahead of us. What distinguishes us in Germany is cohesion. If we die, we all die in the field. That mentality on the field.

-What do you think of Qatar as the venue for the World Cup?

-Giving it to him was not a decision made for the fans and the players. Money was shown to play a crucial role in the world of football. I see the debate about a boycott as something that has to be carried out by the institutions, not the players. Of course we have to have a critical vision and we have done it.

-How long can you see yourself playing?

-I don’t know if I can until I’m 40. When God says it’s over, it’s over. Then I will be able to dedicate myself to my business and to myself. I look forward to a long and successful career and after that I don’t think I’ll be in the football business anymore.

-What will you do when you leave football?

-I want to be a child again and recover the things I couldn’t do. Go to the park and have fun. I have never been to Disneyland because my parents couldn’t afford it.So I never asked for it. One day I will take you with my children.

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“I’m not a footballer to make friends”