The World Cup-winning centre-back spoke about how he’s managed to push in his career and his secret to top-level success.

For Varane, pressure is a friend

Raphael Varane is set to return to Real Madrid’s starting lineup this Tuesday against Liverpool as he hopes to win his fifth Champions League title at the age of just 28. The World Cup-winning centre-back spoke about how he’s managed to push in his career and his secret to top-level success. “For me, pressure is a friend. It’s a driving force,” he said. “I think pressure makes you better. It gives you adrenaline and helps you think faster, stay more focused and play the game more intensely. I’d say that terrifying pressure should motivate you since you run faster when you’re scared”. The Frenchman also revealed his emotional drive during matches. “I don’t think my style of play makes you immediately think that I am a warrior. However, I admit that I have a warrior mentality.”

The Frenchman likes challenges

“I like challenges. The more difficult the challenge, the more I like it. The less you believe in me, the more motivated I am. That is my way of living and thinking, and that is what helped me reach the highest level and stay there for many years”. Varane won almost everything in the game, but his aspirations did not fade away. “I would say it’s natural and innate, and then it develops through whatever you experience,” he said. “In my case, it was a daily challenge to try to beat my older brother to reach my level and improve. There was pressure on me to win and get better from childhood, and it will be with me all my life.”

“As I said, there are ups and downs, but when you are at the top, you have to remember your difficult moments when you tried to get there. You have to think: ‘We have suffered, we went through difficult times, we’ve had to fight to get here, and now we’ve done it’. The greater the pressure, the more the excitement. It’s an explosion of happiness.”