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Thibaut Courtois interview

24/09/2014

We spoke to Chelsea keeper Thibaut Courtois about how it feels to finally be playing for the Blues. Below is the big Belgian's answers to our questions!

What's the best thing about playing for Chelsea?
The best thing is that you play with great team-mates, big stars like Didier Drogba, Cesc Fabregas, Diego Costa, John Terry, and also the fact that this is one of the best teams in the world.

What has been the most memorable save of your career?
I have made quite a few important saves, but if I have to remember one it would probably be from the Spanish Cup final against Real Madrid in 2013, when I made what was almost an impossible save from Mesut Özil in extra time. It was a really great moment, in a game against a rival team who Atletico hadn't beaten for 14 years, so that was a big one. Maybe I have made more beautiful saves, or maybe not, but that one was really important and I am happy with it.

What is the toughest kind of opponent for a goalkeeper?
It depends. You can have Lionel Messi, who produces the unexpected, or Cristiano Ronaldo, who has great shots. Then there are Sergio Aguero and Luis Suarez, who are quick, so it depends on so many things – how you are playing, how your team is defending – but I think there are a lot of great strikers in the world, so it is hard to say just one who is the toughest.

Who do you sit next to in the dressing room?
At Stamford Bridge, I sit next to Petr Cech and Ramires, and at the training ground in Cobham I am next to John Mikel Obi and Eden Hazard. They are all very nice guys.I knew Eden before I arrived here, from playing together with Belgium, and I knew Obi a little bit from playing against him because he was always laughing and making jokes during the games. I remember when I was defending a corner, he once pulled my hand so that I couldn't come out, but he is a very, very nice guy. All my team-mates are nice and there is a very good atmosphere in this dressing room.

Who were your football heroes growing up and why?

When I was small, I looked up to Edwin van der Sar and Iker Casillas, but as I got older I looked more to Van der Sar because he is the more like the kind of goalkeeper I am. So I tried to learn from watching him on TV.

Did you ever play in any other positions before becoming a goalkeeper?
I was a left-back until I was 11 years old and then, in tournaments, I sometimes played as a goalkeeper because I knew that I could play all of the tournament. They saw I had talent there and they put me as a goalkeeper all the time.

What do you like to do when you are not playing football?

I love animals and I have five pets so I am always busy with them. I have three dogs – a Maltese, a Pomeranian and a Labrador – and two cats. I also spend some time on the PlayStation, watching movies or doing things in the city. I also want to study, to keep on learning stuff. I am looking to study while I am here, maybe something to do with management or marketing or something like that because you can use these things when you are older if you want to start something on your own next to your football. I think it is good for you to keep studying and to keep your mind busy.