Valencia CF22 May 2024

Pepelu: “It’s been my best season. It would be a dream to go to the euro”

The Valencia CF player talks to VCF Radio

Valencia CF midfielder, Pepelu, spoke on Wednesday morning to VCF Radio's to look back at his first season at the club, which concludes on Sunday afternoon against Celta Vigo.


Gayà injury

“He is our captain, the person who guides us, a role model in the dressing room. He already knows the support that we all send out to him. Personally, I spoke with him yesterday. He has, from the first moment, been encouraged and knows that it is a tough time, but that he will return as best as possible. I'm sure he will come back as strong and as soon as possible. He already published a photo yesterday with a message about that being how he felt, and I'm sure that's how it will be.”

The end of season

“After the year we had had, I think it has been very good for everyone because we knew the situation, the objective that the club had set. The team have taken a step forward, have been ambitious, but it is true that in these last few games there is that bad feeling that comes with not having been able to win, to give joy to the fans. I don’t think that it should be a black mark on what has been this year. We must remember that we have grown, that young players who had not participated much in the elite level have taken a step up, that we have been strong at Mestalla - one of the objectives at the beginning of the season - and that we have laid the foundations for what we should be.”

The team

“The identity of the team was to fight every minute, to be a difficult team to play against, a very compact block. That has been the recipe for the results that have come about.”

Collective performance

“I am sure that many people outside did not believe that these results could be achieved, but through us being an ambitious, compact team, competing in every game we have played, we have created an identity - which is important - and we have been a very recognisable team. We have done things that few would have thought possible.”

Growth within the group

“From the first moment something beautiful began to be created as a group. We have put together an incredible squad. We have all believed in an idea and as time has passed, we have been strengthening individually and as a team. That has meant that we have achieved things that, at the beginning of the season, we believed were difficult to do.”

Overcoming difficult moments

"We have had quite a few tough injuries happen to us, such as Diakhaby's - which was the most serious in LALIGA - and the team have rebuilt. That speaks very well of us because we are young players and you never know how a team of youngsters might react to those setbacks. That is also something worth highlighting, because it has made us mature."

Putting in the effort until the end

“It has been a very good year and the dip at the end has to make us learn from situations that haven’t gone well to recover, but the group are very happy with the year they have had and we have achieved our objective, although it’s still a shame about the ending to the season."

The fight for Europe

“We knew that there were very strong teams in LALIGA and when we have played against them, we have shown that we can compete and we have beaten some of them, but for us to even be fighting for Europe with two games left is a reward for the work and evolution of the squad."

The match against RC Celta de Vigo

“We’ve got this last game remaining. We are focused on trying to finish the year well and a victory would be a good thing. It's time to fight in Vigo, and I'm sure we can do that."


His best individual season

“I would say it’s been my best season, because in the end it is my second year in the Primera División. The numbers are there to see. I have played practically every game and scored 7 goals in LALIGA which, for my position, is very good. In terms of how I feel, how I have adapted to the team, how the team have grown, it has been my best year in football terms. When you arrive at a new club you always have that doubt, but from the first day I felt that connection with the group, with the coaching staff. Everyone at the club welcomed me very well and that made me have that confidence.”

Baraja’s influence

“It’s been very special. He has played in my position, he knows what is demanded of a midfielder and from the first day he had very clear ideas for me, which he transmitted. You want a coach to explain things clearly you and say what they want from you, and on top of that he has shown confidence in me. It has helped me in taking that step forward within the team.”

A family group

“That’s one of the most important things. What we have created this year has been something very beautiful, which I have rarely experienced in a dressing room. It’s something that’s has come across in every game and training session. The team have always stuck together when things have not been going so well, because each player is reinforced by their teammates, and it’s been like that from the first day to the last day.”

EURO 2024

It would be a dream. I have always said that getting a call-up from the national team would be amazing because it is the dream of every player, to try to represent his country. Being in the pre-list is already something special because it shows an appreciation to my season. The coach has noticed you and I hope that call-up comes and if it must be on Monday then I would be very happy. All players are exposed to the fact that the coach can count on us. We know that the coach is always going to look at Valencia CF and when you do things well and have a good season, then hopefully the moment can come.

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