Valencia CF vs Leganés

Oct, 20 / 16:15 Jornada 9

Actualidad del Valencia C.F.
Noviembre, 11 2017

“Guedes is extremely happy and anxious to help put Valencia CF back where they belong”

On Friday he scored and provided an assist in Portugal's win over Saudi Arabia

Gonçalo Guedes seems to have the Midas touch since his arrival at Valencia CF, and was in dazzling form for the Portuguese national side as they faced Saudi Arabia in a friendly game, bagging a goal, setting up an assist and having six shots on target in a 3-0 win...Wearing the number seven shirt, the young Portuguese star is thrilling Valencia fans and as Mateu Alemany stated to shareholders, the club will do all in their powers to ensure Guedes remain at Valencia CF next season.

Joâo Tralhâo coached an 8-year-old Gonçalo and despite his young age was able to identify a competitive edge in the player, a trait which has evolved over time. Their paths crossed once again when Guedes played at Under-19 level and he was able to see the endeavour the player showed in his quest to become the best, overcoming challenges leveled at him as is the case this season with Valencia CF, as he aims to help put the club back to where they belong.

- How was the eight-year-old Guedes?

From an early age he showed that he has a competitive and driven personality. He was a child who did everything with an acute passion, from his relationship with friends and family to his football. He was highly motivated by everything in his surroundings. Our first challenge was to channel this energy in helping him develop as a person and player.

- What attributes stood-out for you?

His main attribute was his exceptional competitive edge. Now we can appreciate, that at that time, we were dealing with a young talent with huge potential. I recall a particular incident that happened in Luxembourg with the U-10 side. We were playing in the final match and everything was pretty tight until a particular moment when Gonçalo was the only person in the stadium who thought he could reach a ball that looked destined to leave the pitch. He ran almost 30 metres to pick-up the loose ball and provide an assist that was to be the only goal of the final. We were all surprised initially as it seemed that the ball was heading out of play but in the end all we could do was applaud his determination and mindset.

- What characteristics stood-out for you?

He's a player who is prepared to take risks, he never hides and enjoys times like these.

- You later coached him with the Under-19 team, what had changed by then?

When our paths crossed again at U-19 level, he still retained that capacity to become the best. His evolution in the youth systems had helped him to become an even more competitive player. However, he was still aware that he needed to work on certain areas and harness his potential to make the step-up to the next level. His competitiveness was a characteristic that would always separate him from the rest, he really wanted to win absolutely everything, even at training sessions!

- The Mestalla faithful are really enjoying watching him play this season, with some wonder-strikes to his name too. Did he score spectacular goals as a young player too?

He has an ability to score great and key goals as he's not afraid to take risks and takes everything on with a great degree of confidence. This is a talent he has had since an early age. I can still remember some of the important goals he scored as a youth player and it's now rewarding to see him replicate these on a global stage.

- He's a highly talented player but one who is also prepared to help out in defensive tasks.

One of the key tactical and technical areas that we worked with him on were precisely the capacity to assist the team in defensive responsibilities. He used to spend so much energy in his attacking side of the game, we needed to find the correct balance. Today we're proud to know that we have helped develop a player that any coach can count upon for all aspects of a game.

- Apart from his professional characteristics, was he always a decent and disciplined child?

From my perspective, he was always a decent lad. His irreverent personality with an intense competitive edge contrasted with his easy-going friendly personality coupled with his eagerness to learn and respect the educative process. He was a funny guy who liked to joke around but when that time came to play a game and win, no-one saw the smile! Anyone who knows him will realise that, when bigger the task, then higher will be his motivational levels to succeed. At the moment he's with a great club with a large and demanding fan-base and Gonçalo is anxious to help put Valencia CF back in the place where they deserve to be. That's certainly something I've seen in the season so far and I'm sure that this is just the start of a successful campaign. He'll give his all to help and improve this the team.

- Are you still in touch with him? What does he tell you about his first few months with Valencia CF?

I've been with him throughout his career and always in contact with him. I know he's very happy at Valencia CF and determined to secure collective achievements and at the same time endeavour to improve his personal game.