Fernando Llorente at Don Balón
Fernando Llorente recently spoke to Don Balón, and he once again showed what a humble and classy person he is, like the rest of his La Roja teammates. I love that Spain does and has done so well not only because of their footballing prowess, but because they have class players like this one.
Q: You’re improving more every day and this season it appears that you’ve taken an even greater step forward after playing in the World Cup. Do you think this will end up being an important season for you in your career?
A: I never thought things would work out like they did. I had the hopes of going to South Africa, and there we were able to put the finishing touch that has taken me to where I am now. The confidence that you have after winning a World Cup… I returned with a lot of confidence and I scored in the first three matchdays. No one could have expected things to turn out this well, and I’m very happy.
Q: Can we say that you’re in the happiest moment of your career?
A: Yes, I think so, if you analyze a bit what has happened. Not everyone gets to be a champion of the world. The things that I’ve lived through in the last weeks are also some of the best that have happened to me in my career.
Q: You’re also breaking records with the national team, such as the goal average of Lángara, and you have a better average than Villa and Torres. You’ve scored seven goals in 12 games!
A: I’m very happy for all this, for what I’ve been able to contribute to the team. I know that it’s not easy to even get called up. I feel very satisfied with the minutes that I’ve played and with the minutes the coach has given me, and what I always try to do is play the best each time I go out on the field to continue receiving minutes and earning the right to play more.
Q: After your stellar performance in Salamanca with two goals, it was surprising that you didn’t start the game against Scotland in Glasgow. Are you really content?
A: That didn’t surprise me, and I don’t think it surprised anyone. I was surprised to start the Lithuania game… because I feel that it’s not easy at all to be a starter on the team since there are so many other options, and all of them are great. So the fact that I got to start one game means that I’m already a fortunate person.
Q: Raúl was important for the national team for many years, and now it’s Villa’s turn. Do you think you’ll have your moment as well?
A: Well… it’s difficult to achieve what Raúl and Villa have, but I work every day to perhaps one day get to their level, and to be able to accomplish something nice with the national team.
Q: Do you feel compatible with Torres, Villa because you bring some things that they don’t, and do you believe you can compete with them?
A: Yes, I believe that all three of us are compatible because we’re different and each one contributes different things. I hope all three of us can continue contributing so that the Spanish national team remains the best in the world.
Q: Were you very excited to go to Oviedo to receive the Príncipe de Asturias award, as well as the affection of the people?
A: Yes, we were very touched to receive such an important, wonderful award. Getting together was nice as well, because whenever we get together, we always remember what we achieved and lived through during the World Cup, and more so if it’s to receive an award like that one.
Q: You entered the field and revolutionized the team until it was victorious. Is there a before and after in your sporting career after that game against Portugal in the World Cup?
A: Yes, I believe so, because people saw me differently after this game. The fans realized that I could contribute things, that I could be useful for the team. Right now I’m hoping that I can continue to do well each time that I’m counted on.
Fernando also says that he’s not planning on leaving Athletic.