Thibaut Courtois has been one of the main reasons for Zidane’s success last season. The Belgian was rock solid under the bars and won the Golden Glove award for his heroics as Real lifted the La Liga title last season.
Courtois faced a lot of criticism in his initial days. Many thought he wasn’t cut out to play for one of the best clubs in the world, Real Madrid. But he has proved all his haters wrong and has been one of the best goalkeepers right now in world football.
The Belgian has now opened up about surviving a tsunami at Real Madrid in his initial days.
Courtois told the Belgian newspaper HLN, via Marca: “When you see where I’ve come from at Real Madrid… I survived a tsunami there.”
“In 2020 I won the Supercopa [de Espana] with a decisive save in the penalty shootout. And then I read from analysts: ‘Courtois deserves the Belgian of the Year trophy less than [Romelu] Lukaku, because he was always with the national team while Courtois withdrew a few times…’
“I didn’t go to Denmark [with the Belgian national team] in September because I was just on holiday and I thought I needed to be better prepared.”
He further added: “I had three fantastic years at Atletico, I received praise from all over Belgium. I became Sportsman of the Year and I thought it was good.”
“Today I have the feeling that everything I do has become normal. My performance in that game against Valladolid, I think, seemed like it didn’t exist.”
“It seems that continuing to play at a high level at the biggest club in the world is no longer worth the effort.”
Courtois also talked about the upcoming European Championship next summer and he is confident about Belgium’s chances of success. He said: “If we have the best Eden [Hazard], the best Kevin [De Bruyne] and the best Romelu [Lukaku], then we will be contenders to win.”
“I don’t think we have a worse team than two years ago at the World Cup. Some will retire, some will leave, but others have evolved and gained more experience.”