Varane motivated to show our character

Friday 02 June 2023 10:59

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag said recently that Raphael Varane "knows how to win".

The vastly experienced centre-back will carry that mentality into Saturday's Emirates FA Cup final with Manchester City, appreciating how crucial it will be on the big day at Wembley.

During our chat this week with the Frenchman, who has enjoyed much success with his country and Real Madrid on the big stage, he explained how it is possible to develop such a mindset, and cultivate it with your team-mates.

'Casemiro won't be hiding' Video

'Casemiro won't be hiding'

Raphael Varane discusses the nous he and Casemiro will bring to another big occasion on Saturday...

When asked if he has always been a winner or a leader, or is it something he has developed over time, he replied: "Both. I think I have always been like that but, with more experience, I try to share it with my team-mates; to be tactically good on the pitch and create some good energy and motivation.

"So, yeah, I try to help my team-mates and I think big games, with a lot of pressure, it's a good opportunity to show our personality and character to face it, and that's a good challenge. So it makes us excited."

Casemiro, another serial winner who, like Varane, came from Real Madrid, is also expected to be a key figure, as he was when landing the Man-of-the-Match award in the Carabao Cup final victory over Newcastle United, earlier this season.

"He will be really important because has the same time, that calm on the pitch," said Varane. "And that motivation to face the big challenge. We know when the game is difficult, he won't be hiding. He will be ready to fight and help the team.

"So, yeah, we need that kind of player."

Varane knows things could get tense on Saturday but appreciates the fans can help get us over the line, if it is a case of protecting a slender lead against our neighbours.

"We need that energy," he insisted. "I think this season, especially at home, we show, with support, we can suffer together to get the good result. I think it's important to feel the key moments during the games, to bring up the energy.

"It's a great challenge. It has been a good season and we want to finish with something very positive. I know how important it is for our fans, so we are looking forward to it."

Victory and a second domestic cup for the first time in our history would be some way to round off a positive campaign for United, and Varane is in no doubt that it could be a special occasion to enjoy with the supporters.

"I think it's a great opportunity," he reiterated. "And we want to share that great feeling, when you can win a trophy, with our fans. So, hopefully, we can win that trophy and make them happy.

"So many wins, so it has been a good season and one trophy, hopefully too. Yeah, it's a positive season. It has been a good season and I really enjoyed it. As I said, I want to finish it well."