Varane reveals his mantra
Raphael Varane has revealed the mantra he has carried with him since his youth, one that has helped him reach the pinnacle of his profession.
In an exclusive wide-ranging interview with the new edition of Inside United, the World Cup winner admits he had to overcome adversity in his early days in France when trying to make it in the game.
There were some difficult times when he attended boarding school in his early teens but he showed the resilience and character required to eventually become a world-class defender.
When asked about that experience, Varane told us: “Yeah, it was not easy for me. I was very busy and tired but, always, school was very important and obviously football too. So it was difficult to do both things but my mum and my dad wanted to help me, to push me to help me to both things.”
“I think it’s a good school – to learn to fight and to be strong and, mentally, never give up."
Such a steely mentality has stood Raphael in good stead in his time with Lens, Real Madrid and now at United.
The 28-year-old confirmed there is a mantra which he heard at Pole-Espoirs, the French Football Federation development centre, that he uses to help him deal with any problems.
A rough translation into English is: 'To fall is allowed, to rise is mandatory.'
"Yes, this is something I learned when I was younger," he said. "And it was in a moment when I had an injury. A bad moment.
"I know it's obvious but, when it's difficult, that is when you have to show your character and come back stronger. That is why it's important."
When asked if he uses that message to help him, he simply replied: "Always."
February's edition of Inside United is on sale from 18 January to 14 February and is also available to buy online.
In addition to the full interview with Varane, there is also the story of Cristiano Ronaldo and Sir Alex Ferguson's relationship, plus pieces about Tom Heaton, Diego Forlan, Frank Stapleton and actor Charles Babalola.