Isco says Real Madrid have more ‘freedom’ under Zinedine Zidane and wants a good result at Champions League opponents Roma.
Madrid go to Italy on Wednesday for Zizou’s first European tie in charge after replacing Rafa Benitez in January, a change Isco appears to welcome.
“Since he arrived he has given me the freedom to play, to do what I know on the pitch and to take defensive responsibility, which is important for balance,” AS reports.
“And in the first year under Carlo Ancelotti when he was the assistant he gave me good advice. He told me he had trust in me and he has told me that now.
“I remember Zidane’s control as a player, his dribbles, his volley to win La Novena [the ninth European Cup]. I remember he had a lot of elegance and was very classy.
“He was one of the greatest players in history and it was impossible not to notice him.
“Happy? I’m always happy. I’m at Real Madrid and it’s difficult to play all the matches. I worked hard under Benitez and more under Zidane.
“I’m playing more now, sometimes other teammates play, and it’s important everyone is prepared. We have two competitions that are very long and we have to be 100%.
“This is a very similar squad to the one that won La Decima. There haven’t been many changes. But we have a very broad, strong and competitive squad, and now we have to work hard to bring home the Champions League.
“It’s the most important club competition. Everyone dreams of being able to play in it. I’m very happy to have been involved in it almost every year of my career and I’ve been fortunate to win it.
“Roma are a very difficult opponent. They have great players but we have to focus on our game, our idea of football and see what happens from there.
“We know they will be very motivated on their ground. It will be a difficult tie which we hope will be settled in our favour.
“We’ll see the Madrid we’ve seen in recent games, pushing hard, intensity, keeping our philosophy of having the ball and going on the counter at some point.
“It might help us to play the return in front of our fans. Let’s try to get a positive result here to close the tie at home.”