Varane: “Mourinho knows what I need”

Raphael Varane has reflected on his sharp rise to prominence at Real Madrid, from not featuring in Lens’ first-team plans to a €10m summer move and scoring his first goal for the team.

“For me, everything is going very fast, it’s true. A year ago I had not even trained with the first team at Lens. I was in the reserves and now I wear the shirt of Madrid at the Bernabeu.

“It’s great, it is a great stadium. I realised what I was getting into when I arrived at the airport. I thought I had entered another world.”

Varane also confirmed he has yet to speak to France Coach Laurent Blanc about a call-up. Some quarters expected a call-up for the youngster in light of a number of injuries Blanc is currently dealing with, but Varane is not reading too much into not being involved just yet.

“It motivates me to look forward, keep growing and gradually play more. After my debut, it was like a dream, complete happiness. Something unforgettable, exceptional. I sometimes try to take a step back to get perspective of everything that happens around me. I try to not let it effect me too much.”

Many believe Varane chose Real Madrid over reported interest from Manchester United due to Zinedine Zidane’s influence in negotiations. Zidane is the club’s sporting director this season.

“I knew he was important for me, when only 18, to have some support. He is there to help with his great expierence. This is important when you are overseas.

On Jose Mourinho, Varane was also very positive: “Mourinho asks me to play at a high level. I’m young, so before my first game he told me to avoid asking myself too many questions in order to avoid feeling pressure. Mourinho knows what I need and he’s trying to enhance my qualities.

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