Grimaldo: “Xabi Alonso is bringing out the best in me and is an incredible coach”


The full-back Alejandro Grimaldo is clear that he is having “a great year” after being called up for the first time with the Spanish team for the duels against Cyprus and Georgia and gives credit to his “incredible” coach at the German Bayer Leverkusen, Xabi Alonso that is bringing out “the best” in him.

“It is a very special moment, an incredible year, which also with the call from the national team becomes a great year. It is a dream for me to be here,” Grimaldo said in statements to the team’s official media.

The player was international in the youth categories, but has received his first call with the Absolute at the age of 28. “Football usually takes you down different paths, it has taken me down this one, but I am very happy with how everything has gone for me in the different clubs and now it’s time to keep working,” he commented.

And all after debuting at 15 years old. “I don’t think it will put more pressure on you, but maybe I did debut very young and as soon as I debuted I had a serious injury. I think it has its positive and negative points, but I don’t think about that, I have enjoyed football from the first day and I continue to enjoy it,” he added.

The Valencian is “very happy” in Germany, where he is performing at a high level in his first season at Bayer Leverkusen after having shone at Portuguese club Benfica. “Luckily, now, thanks to Bayer Leverkusen, I have also had the opportunity to come to the national team and it is very important for me,” he said.

“He has helped me a lot because in the end he is an incredible coach, who is bringing out the best in me, and with the help of him and the team and mine because I work a lot to be at the best level, I have had the opportunity to be here in the national team and now it’s time to enjoy and make the most of it,” Grimaldo stressed about the figure of Xabi Alonso, his coach at Bayer.

The defender found out in Qarabag, where he had played in the Europa League on Thursday, about his call from Luis de la Fuente. “The flight was a little delayed and I had time to see the call before taking off and I saw that I was called but I didn’t have time to talk to my family and friends. When I arrived my phone was full of messages, crazy,” relates.

“I remember my girlfriend and my daughter, who has almost a year to do now and now I’m going to be a ‘little week’ without her, but for a good cause. I remember a lot of them and also of my parents who always They have supported me since I was little and have followed me everywhere, which has not been easy,” Grimaldo confessed.

Finally, regarding his characteristics, the left-handed back acknowledges that he likes to “attack, above all,” but that he has also “improved a lot defensively.” “I can play both in a line of four and of five and I like to be inside if the coach needs it. I adapt to different roles and I have a good set piece, which I think is important,” he said.