Del Piero: What a moment!
Wednesday 5 November, 2008
Alessandro Del Piero admits “I could not be happier” after two goals put the Bernabeu at his feet.
“We won, played a great game, I scored two goals. Really, how can you get better than that?” grinned the Juventus captain.
He secured the 2-0 victory away to Real Madrid that mathematically qualifies Juve for the knockout phase of the Champions League.
“You live off nights like this and the unique emotion. I am happy the crowd gave me a standing ovation when I left the field.
“It was so great to score and this is a fantastic stadium, so it was a very important match for us. I must admit this is a positive time for me.”
Del Piero has scored four goals in as many Champions League games and three of them were against Real Madrid.
His low drive and free kick earned him a standing ovation at the Bernabeu when substituted in stoppages.
“It is the ultimate feeling in football. To score two goals and win in such a big game, then to be applauded by the opposing fans is a sign of recognition that goes beyond rivalry. It was wonderful.
“I learned from the best with free kicks and always studied, trained hard to get better at this skill.”
Iker Casillas did not set out the defensive wall very well and the Spaniard was left rooted to the spot by his free kick.
“I asked [Christian] Molinaro to extend the wall and decrease the vision the goalkeeper had. I aimed it at the near post and thankfully Casillas stayed there.”
Alex is in incredible form right now despite the fact he turns 34 on Sunday, so what is behind this remarkable consistency?
“My family keeps me grounded and happy, my teammates put their faith in me and physically I am fit. This is a moment when everything is going well. The desire to always improve and work hard is essential, too.
“Fatherhood has helped me and really revitalised my life, plus having confidence is crucial. If you are able to train regularly and focus on objectives to keep getting better, then you always feel fresh.”
Juve are in the knockout round of the Champions League, but this time two years ago were battling in Serie B after the Calciopoli scandal.
“I will never forget playing in Serie B, nor do I wish to. I experienced it wholeheartedly with a smile on my face, as I chose that path and knew we would get back into Serie A and the Champions League. I don't feel as if this is the end of an era, but rather it keeps going.”