Julen Lopetegui replies to claims that he said Lionel Messi is the best in the world

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Thursday evening was weird, wasn’t it?

Almost simultaneously, Julen Lopetegui was unveiled as the new Real Madrid manager as new Spain boss Fernando Hierro – alongside captain Sergio Ramos – conducted their very own press conference.

In Russia, Ramos came out firing and insisted that the Spanish players won’t be affected by what has happened.

“We need to move on as soon as possible. These have not been pleasant times at all,” he said.

“Julen has been part of all the preparations for this World Cup. (But) Spain needs to come before any individual. As soon as possible, let’s move on from this and focus on the World Cup. That is better for everyone.

“There are no cracks. We are all individuals and we all think differently, but the collective idea is the same. We are here to go for the World Cup.

“The reality is that we will change little, we don’t have time. We have clear ideas and we are not going to change our concept of how to play football one jot.”

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Meanwhile, in Madrid, Lopetegui spoke of a crazy 24 hours that has seen him sacked by Spain and appointed by Real Madrid.

“Yesterday was the saddest day of my life since the death of my mother, but today is the happiest day of my life,” he said with tears in his eyes.

 

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But there was another comment Lopetegui made that confused fans.

Previous quotes suggest that he thought Lionel Messi was the best player in the world.

In 2017, when asked by the media whether he thought Messi was the best player of all time, Lopetegui replied: “He’s the best player in history, I agree.”

Lopetegui was asked about those comments in his press conference as he was unveiled as Real manager and he replied: “Cristiano Ronaldo is the player I want by my side always. Obviously, the best in the world is at Real Madrid.”

 

Hmmmm.

Lopetegui’s answer obviously pleased the Madrid media in the room and they gave him a round of applause for his answer.

Well, he wasn’t going to say anything else, was he?

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