Real Madrid winger Vinicius Junior has been one of the bright spots in an underwhelming campaign for Los Blancos, rising to prominence under Santiago Solari, and the Brazilian has spoken of his admiration for his new head coach, Zinedine Zidane.
The Frenchman returned to the bench on March 11, having resigned on May 31, 2018, though Vinicius’ injury has meant that he has not yet featured during Zidane’s second reign at the club.
“When a guy like that – who played at such a high level – is on the bench and says anything, you pay attention, don’t you?” Vinicius said to Esporte Espetacular.
“Sometimes we get a little nervous when we are going to speak to him.
“He does everything for you, so you only worry about playing football.”
Until his injury in the infamous Champions League second leg tie against Ajax, the 18-year-old had become a fixed member of the starting line-up, playing ahead of some experienced heads in the Madrid dressing room, yet he is confident that he will be provided another chance to impress under Zidane.
“I know that Zidane gives chances to everyone,” Vinicius added.
“We are now preparing for next season.
“I am calm because I know that when I have recovered [from my injury], my chance [to impress] will appear.”
Much has been discussed in relation to Madrid’s disappointing season, but Vinicius is confident that they will recover ahead of the 2019/20 campaign.
“We were champions of Europe for 1,000 days,” said the Brazilian.
“My teammates know that they are the best, that at some point they would lose, and we believe that it came at the right time so that we can return stronger next season.”
Vinicius was asked to present Brazil’s new shirt ahead of the Copa America in the summer, which will be held in Brazil, yet the forward is unsure if he will be included in Tite’s squad due to his recent injury.
“When you come back from an injury, you are a little afraid,” Vinicius noted.
“But I am preparing very well so that I can play the final matches [of the season] and, if possible, be called up by the national team.
“I would be happy [if that happens], and if I don’t, I will provide support so that the national team can win.”