Fernando Llorente does the XLSemanal Q&A
We continue with Fernando Llorente in this not so original Q&A (see note at the end).
Date and place of birth: Feb. 26, 1985. Pamplona. Nicknames: El Rey León (the Lion King). Teams: Funes, River Ebro, Athletic. Games with the national team: 20. Position: forward. Height: 1.95 meters. Weight: 90 kilos. Civil status: unmarried. Professional debut: Jan. 16, 2005.
1. Something about women that you don’t understand: why they take so long to get ready to go out.
2. My first kiss: the first one is never the best.
3. Scoring a goal or having sex? The important thing is to score.
4. How do you surprise your girlfriend? I give my girlfriend gifts that I know she’ll like: her favorite dessert, flowers… One time, I organized a surprise trip to New York.
5. You’re from La Rioja, what do you think about wine? I like it, but I’m a professional. A glass once in a while doesn’t hurt you, but I take care of myself. I like to eat at home, control my diet.
6. Fame: I try to put those things aside and not pay attention so that nothing can distract me.
7. The future: I look at the present. If I paid attention to the rumors, it would be impossible for me to concentrate.
8. 36 million as a buyout clause is a lot of money: it seems excessive in this crisis, but it’s what was signed. When I re-signed with the club, I asked for a salary increase, and the club asked me to raise the buyout clause. It’s logical that it wants to protect its interests.
9. I like to spend money on… clothing, although I’m almost always wearing sweats. I save money, I watch my expenses.
10. A dream: to play in the Champions League.
11. Madrid or Barça? I only know what the press says.
12. An idol: Laudrup.
13. A ritual: I pray before games. After that, I give a sort of battle cry.
14. Favorite dish: pasta.
15. The biggest influence on my career has been: my brother.
16. The secret to my success is: discipline. No matter what good qualities you have, if you don’t take it seriously, you won’t get far.
17. Who would you ask an autograph of? Maradona.
18. A book: I don’t read too much.
19. The last time you traveled using public transport: I always go by car.
20. Pets? As a kid, I had a cat, Flipper, I gave him milk using a baby bottle.
21. The growth spurt: I was always the tallest kid in my class. One summer, I grew a lot.
22. I arrived in Bilbao at the age of 12… it was very hard to leave my parents, I cried every night. I lived with a family, and I’m still friends with them, but it was very strange for me to have someone who wasn’t one of my parents tell me what to do. Then, from the time I was 14 until I was 20, I lived in a residence for Athletic players.
23. Marcelo Bielsa: his arrival meant a radical change. I realized that I had to progress. We’ve all grown and evolved with him, and now we’re all a bit better.
24. Mourinho or Guardiola? Both are great and both know how to put the media pressure on themselves to liberate their players. I don’t think it’s a bad strategy. We have to focus on our game and forget everything else.
25. The roughness of defenders: that’s what happens when you’re a reference in the attack. I work very hard in the gym to build up physical strength so that I can go in easier.
26. A perfect physique for English football: yes, I’ve been told that many times. Xabi Alonso and Fernando Torres, who have played there, highlighted the respect the English have for the players. Perhaps I’ll end up there, who knows, right now I’m here.
27. Memories of the World Cup: the quarterfinal against Paraguay. If Iker hadn’t saved that penalty, we would have gone home. And in the final, his one on one with Robben… everyone talks about Iniesta’s goal, but Iker was also decisive.
[Ok, Fernando has booked himself a permanent place on my list of beloved players with that statement.]
28. A movie: Gladiator.
29. A group: The Killers.
30. A TV series: “Baywatch.” [Jajaja!!]
31. What would you bring to a desert island? A ball, my brother and my girlfriend.
It appears that ABC just recycled previous interviews and Q&As for this series with five of the players, because as you can see, some of the answers in this Q&A are from Fernando Llorente’s Telva interview from the beginning of last year, and the scoring question is from a Marca interview. I noticed the same thing with the previous Q&As. ABC does say, however, that the photos are “exclusive.” Anyway, would you like me to do the rest of the Q&As? I have Xabi and Iker left.