‘CWC? Madrid have best badge’

Rafa Benitez has played down the significance of Real Madrid giving up the Club World Cup as “the world’s most prestigious badge is ours”.

Los Blancos will be replaced by either Barcelona or River Plate as officially the world’s best club team on Sunday, but the Coach was of the opinion that history was more important than any piece of silverware.

“[On being disrespected], fortunately I’ve spent many years in many countries and have enough experience,” he said at a Press conference ahead of Madrid’s match against Rayo Vallecano in La Liga on Sunday.

“Here I was taught respect and hard work, and I’ll continue with my line of work.

“We always want to win and when something goes wrong, we change something. That’s our idea.

“[On losing the Club World Cup], the world’s most prestigious badge is ours, that’s what we must never forget.

“[Rayo] are an attacking team, who play an open game, but our fans know how important it is for us [to win].

“You have to forget about what happened [in the past] and support your team. It’s ‘Hala Madrid’ and nothing else.

“[Toni Kroos] is a great player and always available to play where we see fit. He remains essential for us.

“I shared a table with [Madrid legend] Amancio at our Christmas dinner and remembered a phrase from [Alfredo] di Stefano, when he said that the most important thing was to put your overalls on [referring to working hard].

“I don’t feel more pressure now. Every season is different because the circumstances are different.

“I’m still convinced that we’ll fight for the League and Champions League.

“[Zinedine Zidane] is a good Coach, who’s still in the development phase.

“Our relationship is good, there’s no problem, we communicate well and talk about players between the first team and B team.

“I don’t have anything to say [about Jose Mourinho’s sacking from Chelsea].

“I have full confidence in the team. The atmosphere is much better than what is being constantly discussed in the media.

“We’ll be fighting to the end and win trophies.”

Tags Club World Cup Rafa Benitez