first team / Sedan - OL D-2

3 questions for... Juninho

Published on the 16 November 2006 à 20:43 by BV

At the end of a week dominated by international football, Juninho talks about his love of OL, the injuries that have hit the Lyon attack and also his predictions for European Footballer of the Year...

Juninho, have you not found it wierd to be in Lyon this week while the Brazil side was just over in Switzerland?
I'm getting used to it. Just like I'm getting used to training with the young players. At the start of the season it was all new, but now I get to spend more time at home. And it also lets me work a little bit more. I don't have any regrets and I won't be going back on my decision. I'd like to finish my career at Lyon to really leave my mark on this club. I think the best is still to come because we will remain a very competitive team in the future. I'm already part of the history of this club but there's still a lot more I want to achieve.

Are you concerned by the number of injuries to the attackers?
Yes. That's normal because we haven't yet played with all three missing. And Nino and Florent Malouda both played 90 minutes for France on Wednesday. We'll be counting on the kids, without putting too much pressure on them. They've already shown their talent. We're coming into a period where we might suffer more than usual and the absences might be felt a little more.
The good news is that Claudio Caçapa is back and that's great. Claudio is our captain, the symbol of our team. Claudio hasn't scored his winning goal yet this season but I'm sure he will. For several seasons now we've been winning matches thanks to our central defenders and we're lucky to have players like Toto Squillaci and Cris who have the ability to score goals.

Who do you pick for the next European Player of the Year award?
My choice is between two players: Thierry Henry and Samuel Eto’o. I can't see two other players deserving it more than them. It's really 50/50. Eto'o wasn't at the World Cup but had a great year with Barcelona - he was basically 50% of the side. Today they are struggling to win without him. He's an incredible player, capable of scoring more than 20 goals a season while still doing so much work for the team. Thierry Henry doesn't only deserve it for what he's done this season, but also over several seasons. He made the Champions League final and then the World Cup final, scoring important goals in both competitions. I think he just misses actually winning a trophy. If I had some pace I certainly would've have been in with a chance more than once.
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