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Pedri talks Iniesta, Luis Enrique, jersey number, Euros, and World Cup dream



Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images

Coming into the 2022 World Cup, there are a few stars bigger than Pedri at the tournament. In only his third-ever season of top-flight football, the Spaniard has established himself as one of the best midfielders in the world, and the leader of Luis Enrique’s La Roja.

Pedri took to the press ahead of Spain’s first game against Costa Rica on 23rd January as part of the pre-game conference. He opened it strongly, claiming that he was not the biggest star in the Spanish side.

“I don’t feel like I am the number one star in the Spanish national team.”

“For me, the responsibility lies with the whole team. I don’t feel like the biggest star just because my picture is on the buildings in Doha. I don’t focus on that, I just want to play and be calm; do what I can and do what my coach asks,” he added.

Speaking of the coach, Luis Enrique has set up a Twitch streaming service, which has garnered the attention of fans and players alike. Pedri was asked to comment on it, to which he replied:

“For me, everything is fine. I try to watch him every night and laugh a lot at his answers. The coach is so spontaneous, and the team is enjoying him. If he is having fun, we are all, too.”

Lucho also explain to fans how the jersey numbers for the Spanish team are chosen, with the most experienced players getting priority in the picking order. Pedri, being one of the youngest players in the team, got one of the last picks.

“I don’t care much about it. When choosing numbers, there were only two left, so I chose 26. That’s it,” Pedri said, when asked about his choice.

Spain are one of the favourites for the tournament, but largely because of their team chemistry and tactical nuances, much like 2010. Pedri opened up about his World Cup dream, saying:

“I dream of something big in Qatar. We want to be among the best. Of course, there are teams that think they are better than us, but we have to think calmly.”

He continued on the same beat, reminiscent about their impressive run into the European championship last year, saying, “In the Euros, we were in the semi-finals, but if you look back, we deserved to be in the final.”

One of the influences on Pedri, quite evidently, is Andres Iniesta. “I always watched his videos. When I saw him do something, I tried to do it. He supported me when I had injuries and sent me a lot of messages,” Pedri said.

He was also asked about Luis Enrique’s future with the national team, who has been at the helm of the team since 2018.

Pedri replied, “From my point of view, I think he deserves to continue with the national team because he is a coach who contributes a lot, but in the end, it is a decision that he and the federation will make.”

Source: RFEF

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