After months of uncertainty regarding his future at the Santiago Bernabeu the Colombian international appears to finally be at ease in Madrid under the French manager. James Rodriguez has said that Los Blancos manager Zinedine Zidane is his “idol” after making a goalscoring return to the first team in the Spanish Giants 2-0 win over Espanyol.
Real Madrid with this win have equaled the record set by Pep Gaurdiola’s Barcelona of 16 consecutive win in the La Liga as James and Karim Benzema netted on either side of the break at the Estadi Cornella-El Prat, making light of superstar forward Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale were sidelined for the contest.
The Columbian has struggled for a regular first-team spot under Zidane but he has told reporters after the match that he holds his coach in the highest regard.
He issued a recent statement claiming, “Zidane is my idol. Real Madrid is my dream. I hope it lasts much more time.”
“My family and I are very happy in Madrid and in the team. I will fight to stay here forever.”
Further clearing out any rumours of a potential move away from Spain and dismissing that he was not happy, he added, “It’s not true that I’ve had a bad time. Me not speaking [to the public] doesn’t mean I have a bad relationship with anyone.”
“We are united as a team and everyone has supported me here since the first day. We want more wins and more records.”
“I understand the coach’s decisions. He knows I always want to help the team, not just with goals and assists.”
James scored from a brilliant effort during the first-half stoppage time in a game they had initially struggled in and eventually were 2-0 winners in a game in which Real did not have a couple of their key stars.
“We fell a little behind in the first half but gathered ourselves and the goal came soon enough.”
Hopefully this statement has a positive impact on his career and his ambition of earning a place in the starting eleven on a more regular basis.
Whether or not he can live up to Zidane’s expectations from him in the upcoming days remains to be seen, though if given the right kind of opportunities, James will surely shine for the Los Blancos.
Hopefully the Colombian international can deliver with his manager putting a bit more faith in him in recent times, after some of his better performances producing some much needed goals for boosting his confidence.
Zidane on the other hand will be quite content knowing that he has enough quality on the bench as well, in case it is needed when some of his first choice players are out injured, as the champions of Europe look to win more silverware this term.