Real Madrid Delighted to be in the Spanish capital

Alphonse Areola during Friday's training session at Valdebebas.
Alphonse Areola during Friday’s training session at Valdebebas. AFP

Alphonse Areola is hoping to follow in the footsteps of one of his heroes at Real Madrid, having idolised Iker Casillas in his youth.

The Frenchman has taken the No.1 shirt at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu, and he’s excited to wear the shirt.

“The number one represents a lot at this club,” Areola said at his presentation on Friday.

“Casillas wore it. He was one of my idols and he made me want to be a goalkeeper and now I have his shirt.

“It’s a nice number and I’ll have to prove that I am the No.1.”

Thibaut Courtois is still Zinedine Zidane‘s first choice though, and Areola will have to compete with the Belgian if he wants minutes.

“He’s left-handed and I’m right-handed,” Areola said of a possible rivalry with Courtois.

“The first contact has been very good.

“There will always be opportunities and I have to show my level.

“I only have one year [here] on loan, but I’ll try to make the most of it and show my level.”

Madrid take on Paris Saint-Germain in their Champions League opener, but Areola hasn’t been chatting about his former club to his new teammates.

“It’s true that it’s a big coincidence,” he stated.

“I haven’t spoken about them in the dressing room.

“I just want to integrate as soon as possible.”