(Reuters) – Real Madrid defender Marcelo said on Sunday that rumours about him leaving the club were false and insisted that he was happy there.
The Brazilian, a key player at Real since arriving in 2007, lost his place to youngster Sergio Reguilon earlier this season and Spanish media reports have frequently linked him with a move to Juventus over the past six months.
The 30-year-old full-back may have been out of favour under former coaches Julen Lopetegui and Santiago Solari but since Zinedine Zidane’s return to the club, he has regained his place in the side.
Having started five of six games with the Frenchman back at the helm, Marcelo felt the time was now right to speak about his future following Real’s 3-1 victory over Athletic Bilbao.
“I’m focused on the club. Everything that’s happened this season hasn’t affected me at all. I carried on working hard, helping my team mates, whether playing or not,” he said.
“I’ve always been there with them, backing everyone. Whether you play or not is just part of the season and of being a footballer, but I have never stopped working or helping my team mates. If I play, then all the better.
“Everyone here knows how happy I am and I show it every day, either training or playing, wearing this shirt.
“A lot is being said about me on the outside. I think — no I don’t think, I know — that Madrid is my home and those who know me know the truth.”
(Reporting by Joseph Cassinelli; Editing by Ian Chadband)