Adán: "The quality here is very high"
The goalkeeper reflect on his opening months at Sporting CP
Sporting CP's starting goalkeeper in the first four official matches played this season, Antonio Adán has been the most frequently featured of the club's summer signings to date. The Spaniard talked to Sporting CP Media during the international break, giving the lowdown on how things are going since his arrival.
Integrating into the group
"The group have made me very welcome from the start. I was told that this was a young and pleasant group for players. I think that both I and the new players have integrated very well. Due to the circumstances we have had to spend a lot of time together, first in preseason and then because of the COVID-19 isolation. That actually made my integration easier."
The combination of youth and experience
"I believe that the combination of youth with experience is what makes the group a good one. The older players bring experience and the younger players the daring of those who are starting out -in addition to the quality of Sporting CP's academy system. We are creating a strong group, which means good expectations. When I was in other countries I saw that there were always many Portuguese players being signed by other teams. Now that I'm here, I realise that the quality is very high. We have some very good young players that I am sure will reach the highest level."
"The more competition there is within the squad, the better it is for everyone on an individual, collective and club level. It makes everyone evolve and ensures that everyone is at full strength. It allows the team to grow."
The game against Porto
"Both I and the rest of the group have prepared for this game just like we prepared for all the previous games. In the end, it's three more points at stake. Of course, for Sportinguistas this is more important than that, as it is one of Liga NOS' biggest matches. Obviously, after having played in other big games in Spain, I also want to do it in Portugal. However, I think that we are preparing in the same way that we prepared for the previous two games. It's the path we have to follow until the end of the season, preparing each game as if it were a final."
"I understand that for fans there is an added importance in it being a chance to beat a direct rival, but for us it's just three more points. I understand everything that surrounds the game: When we walk down the street, the fans stop us to talk about it, but we have to be calm and remember that it's just another three points."
A possible return for fans
"It is difficult for us, not having them here. Especially for this club, the fans are very important for those of us on the pitch. What I have been told is that they help a lot, and that is very important to us. Fortunately, in specific games, such as Portugal vs. Spain, we have already seen some fans in the stands. On the previous matchdays in the league there were fans in the game between CD Santa Clara and Gil Vicente FC, and that gives us hope that, soon, we will have our fans in the stadium. I hope it will be as soon as possible, because we need them and I personally want to see what the stadium is like with people in the stands. Football is for fans. Football without spectators is missing something."
Rúben Amorim's coaching methods
"I spoke to the coach before coming here, and his ideas transmitted a lot of personality and a way of playing that fits my ideas, because I played like that at Real Betis Balompié. He likes his teams to show personality on the pitch, and I think this is ideal for a club like Sporting CP, who have to dominate the game and go after the three points."
Specific goalkeeping training
"I'm delighted to be working with Tiago Ferreira and Jorge Vital, the club's goalkeeping coaches. At the beginning I was more tired; I was coming from Atletico Madrid, where there were a lot of matches and the training was not that intense. I'm really enjoying it. Vital has many years of experience, and Tiago compliments him in a brilliant way. We have done a great job over the past few weeks."
"I have always kept in mind that hard work is the most important thing. Having the opportunity to do specific goalkeeping work for so many days during the week is essential for me. Our position is based on confidence, and being able to work for so much time with two people who are so well prepared makes me much more confident going into a game."