Fede Valverde has been Real Madrid’s first Uruguayan player for more than a decade and the midfielder is proud of his country’s achievements.
Reflecting on his childhood and his journey to the top, Valverde spoke of the very different kind of experiences he had growing up compared to the perfect grounds he now plays on.
Fede Valverde looks back on his experiences in Uruguay
“In Uruguay, not all fields are grass, even in the first division, so imagine table football,” he said in an interview with The Guardian.
“These are clay courts, gravel. You are going to take a corner and there is an animal next to you. It makes you grow, fight harder. It’s nice to come back from a game with your face covered in dirt, your hair full of mud, your shoes full of stones. “
“You are going to take a corner and there is an animal next to you”
“The most beautiful thing a child can experience is to get on the bus every weekend in their kit, to share that with their friends and family.”
“Football is essential for Uruguay, people die for their teams, they are crazy for their team.”
“When you’re a kid, the first thing they throw at you is a ball. We have such a small population, so producing so many players makes you very proud.”
Valverde is already proud of what he has achieved so far, as are his parents. “They fought for me, all this sweat, this work and these tears, and having them here now, seeing them so well, enjoying my son, gives me a strength that I cannot describe,” he said. he continued in his interview with The Guardian.
“There was a moment of change in my life, which I also regret now because I would have liked to have stayed in school, when I had to decide to continue studying or to play football, because I was missing a lot of school, ”he recalled.