Alvaro Arbeloa doesn’t feel he crossed a line in his defence of Real Madrid. ‘If I was wrong, I’ll keep being wrong.”
Arbeloa had an emotional goodbye at Santiago Bernabeu on Sunday as he leaves the club this summer, with Gerard Pique praising his rival, admitting that their rows sometimes got out of hand.
“I don’t have to say anything because I have nothing to say…I’m calm because I defended my team and I never disrespected Barcelona or their fans,” Arbeloa told El Laguero, AS reports.
“I wasn’t wrong and if I was, I would continue to be wrong my whole life because I’d keep doing it. I tried to be respectful and I believe I was. I’ll keep defending Madrid and the way I have done it has been respectful, and I didn’t want anyone to run roughshod over us.”
Marca adds, however, that Arbeloa said he ‘doesn’t hold a grudge’ against Pique, ‘despite what he said about me.’
Arbeloa came to prominence in the Madrid-Barca feud during the run of games in 2010-11, when tempers routinely flared between the sides.
“The problem was there were a lot of games in short time and there was tension. There were no problems after the call between Iker Casillas and Xavi Hernandez. We won the League and continued normally, there was too much hype to something we didn’t give a lot of importance,” he recalled.
“My relationship with Casillas wasn’t the best but when I injured his hand, that wasn’t the cause, that was just accidental during a match. I’m lucky to have gotten along with everyone.
“I’m grateful for what Casillas said because he had no need to and if he did it, it’s because he felt it. And more to the point, he can say whatever he wants. I’m lucky I’m not spiteful as you can destroy yourself with that, and the relationship with Casillas is one of respect.”
Arbeloa also considered the future, both his next step and how he wants Madrid to end the season, with two trophies available.
“Italy? I don’t know. It’d be strange coming here as a rival. I already did it with Liverpool, but I hadn’t spent seven years here then and now I have, and it’d be strange,” he admitted.
“Champions League or La Liga? I’m more excited for the Champions League because it’s in our hands. We can be League champions. There’s a possibility and we’re focused on winning [at Deportivo La Coruna] and we need our friends in Granada [who play Barca] to give us a hand.”