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Azpilicueta: "The bar is to be here until the last day"

MADRID, 19 Nov.

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Azpilicueta: "The bar is to be here until the last day"


The Spanish international César Azpilicueta has assured that "the bar" for the group in this World Cup is to be in Qatar "until the last day", and has highlighted the "connection" of the group, which has already been demonstrated "in very delicate moments in the Eurocup ", in addition to valuing the "daring" with which the youngest arrive.

"The objective here is to play seven games. I lived my debut in the World Cup and it was not what I would have wanted; in the Eurocup we saw the happy face on penalties against Switzerland and the sad face against Italy. Those small details are the ones that make you they can mark a World Championship, but those are also preparing. The bar for the group is to be here until the last day," he declared at a press conference.

In this sense, he acknowledged that lifting the trophy on December 18 "would mean a lot." "The World Cup is the maximum at the level of national teams, and we are going for it. We have a magnificent opportunity as a group to continue this evolution. We know how complicated it is. In 2010 I enjoyed myself as a fan and then I had three opportunities to be in a World Cup The first two were not as I wanted and now we have another. We will try to do our best to make the fans feel proud," he said.

In addition, he recalled that "the two previous experiences" in Brazil and Russia "were not as one would have dreamed." "But football is giving us another opportunity. The situation of the group is fantastic, we arrived in a great dynamic, with a very young team... Right now the only difference I see compared to teams from other World Cups is that only 'Busi' remain ' of 2010, that only six players have experience in the World Cup. We have to be united, we know that football is more competitive every day. Hopefully we can improve the two previous editions", he wished.

"Although I made my debut in my first year at Chelsea, it is true that I did not have continuity with the national team afterwards. As I said before Euro 2020, I had never managed to show in the national team what I had been showing at Chelsea. I had not played my level, that is the reality, you have to be humble and self-critical. I really wanted to return to the national team, I had that little thorn after being from 2013 to 2018, where I had played at times. From the Eurocup I managed to turn it around and play at my level. Now I have a fantastic opportunity in the World Cup to try to make it difficult for the coach. There's Dani -Carvajal-, Marcos -Llorente-, who can play on the wing... We're all going to do our best to contribute. It was shown in the Eurocup, there are opportunities for everyone, we can all contribute different things", he continued.

The Navarrese also highlighted the union of 'la Roja'. "I was out of the national team for two and a half years, I joined for the Euro Cup. When I arrived I saw an environment that I had not experienced before. The connection that has been formed was seen at very delicate moments in the Euro Cup; we managed to connect people and we stayed one step away from the final of the Eurocup. Nobody was waiting for us there. We lost the final of the League of Nations against France, we have qualified for the next one... The results are there, and the unity of the group is what that makes the difference. When we beat Portugal at the last minute, seeing the whole group, those who played and those who didn't, fair, it was wonderful", he pointed out.

He also regretted that some doubt the group because of its youth. "If it is a young team, because it is very young, if it is very veteran, because it is very veteran... Each one has a role. Those of us who have more experience in professional football try to teach things that have not been known to players who They are 18-19 years old. You see the self-confidence with which they come. I will always remember Gavi when he arrived at the League of Nations at 17; I, when I was 17, did not have that audacity. Everyone has to contribute what they have to the group, that we are a balanced group. It is a source of pride that the players in the lower categories are getting into the absolute ranks. Each one must pitch in with what they touch", he said.

"What surprises me the most is their audacity, they don't wrinkle. It's a pleasure to see that preparation they have. Young people are beginning to understand football earlier with that level of maturity and understanding the game. Some of them will be 18 years and they will have already been in a Euro Cup and a World Cup. Sergio Ramos and Cesc Fàbregas arrived at the national team very young, and now we have the case of Pedri, Gavi, Yeremy, Nico, Alejandro Balde...", continuous.

On the other hand, the Chelsea footballer sent "a lot of encouragement" to José Luis Gayà, who had to leave the concentration due to injury. "Yesterday was a very sad day for all of us and we will also give our souls for him, because it is a great loss both on and off the pitch. Unfortunately, football is like that. Now a teammate like Alejandro is coming; he is a young player who has shown his quality at Barcelona. I don't know him personally, but from what I've seen he's a very physical player, the speed he reaches when he has space is incredible. The group is going to welcome him from the first moment and hopefully adapts as soon as possible. Together we will try to have a good World Cup", he said.

On defense, he stressed that it is "the part in which fewer mistakes can be made." "But if something has characterized this team, it is that we play as a team; when we attack, the goalkeeper is the first player to look for superiority. As a defender, I have that extra responsibility of not conceding goals, because many games are decided by small mistakes "We defend in a very particular way, we don't give our opponents time. There is always room for improvement. We try to defend high, sometimes we take risks, but the numbers are there: we are one of the least thrashed teams", he stated.

He was also full of praise for Ansu Fati, who entered the squad after missing out on the Euro Cup due to his serious injury. "Ansu is an unbalanced player, he has different things. He's very young, he has that daring, that ability to face players, look for holes, create good opportunities for his teammates... Ansu can be an important player, he has shown it, and he's coming in a good state of form", ensured.

In another order of things, he valued the deal with Luis Enrique and his new facet as a 'streamer'. "The coach is what he is. We receive that confidence that he transmits to us, we are one of the few teams that play the same way without seeing the result, and it is his job. His ideas are clear, he always tries to help and protect the group," he said. "I would be unable to see the way he does it... We would never have imagined that. We have to adapt to the new generations, connect and speak naturally. I'm sure he's still there giving a show," he joked.

In addition, he visualized the first game against Costa Rica. "We have shown during all these years that we are a team that plays in the same way from the first minute to the last; we try to create chances, not give our opponents time. Costa Rica is a very competitive team and we will try to impose our rhythm. The last debuts in World Cup have not been as expected and we hope to start winning," he said.

"Keylor is a player with a lot of experience at the highest level, he has won great titles, he is the star of Costa Rica. I have a very positive opinion of him. He is a high-level goalkeeper. We will try to give him work and we have a great game." ", he added.

Finally, Azpilicueta did not want to assess the decision to ban alcohol in and around the stadiums. "We don't make the decisions, the players go there to play. FIFA and the organization make those decisions, I can't say anything else," he concluded.

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