Cissokho not Mathieu’s enemy

Valencia defender Aly Cissokho has downplayed the rivalry between him and fellow Frenchman Jeremy Mathieu over the left back position.

Cissokho, a summer arrival from Lyon, has conducted a Marca interview with an A-Z theme, and M was for Mathieu. Cissokho has made seven starts for Los Che this season, but with Mathieu newly returned from injury competition is set to intensify.

“He's a fellow countryman,” said the 25-year-old. “At major clubs there is a lot of competition. He's a great player and there are many games to be played.”

The former Porto player also gave his backing to under-fire Coach Mauricio Pellegrino, and looked back with fondness on his debut in the 1-0 loss to Barcelona at Camp Nou.

“Pellegrino talks a lot with the players and affects the tactical side of things. I know he will come in handy for me as that is an aspect I needed to improve in.

“It was a real challenge, my first match for Valencia, at the Camp Nou against the best team in the world. It's a match that will remain in my memory forever.”

Tags Cissokho France Lyon Mathieu