Je­sus Navas on Sevilla ‘kid­nap’

Sevilla didn’t re­ally have to drag the ex-man City winger back to An­dalu­sia in the boot of a BMW

FourFourTwo - - CONTENTS - Je­sus wears the new Bolt and Royal Blue New Bal­ance Furon 3.0 boot. To find out more, go to new­bal­­ball

How much are you en­joy­ing be­ing back at Sevilla, the club where your ca­reer be­gan? I’m very happy to be back where I con­sider my home. It’s where I grew up, both as a foot­baller and as a per­son. I’m back in the same house I used to live in. Ev­ery­thing feels just like it al­ways used to.

Did you have many of­fers from other clubs when you left Manch­ester City back in May? There were a few clubs in­ter­ested in sign­ing me, but there was only one de­ci­sion. The op­por­tu­nity to come home was too much to re­sist, es­pe­cially as it be­came ob­vi­ous the fans were re­ally keen for me to come back. Sevilla are the team of my heart, I had great times here and I want to re­peat them.

The club an­nounced your re­turn with a video. It pre­tended you’d been kid­napped and driven back there in a car boot. What did you think of that? [Laughs] Well, to be hon­est the best bit of it all was tak­ing off the mask and be­ing back at the sta­dium for the first time. It was ac­tu­ally an actor who was ‘kid­napped’ in the car, but it was a re­ally fun idea. I hope I’m not kid­napped for real any time soon!

Do you think you’ll end your ca­reer with Sevilla? I’m only think­ing about this year, play­ing well and help­ing the team. It would be a dream to fin­ish my


ca­reer at Sevilla. I’m only just 32 so it’s a few years away yet, but it’s def­i­nitely some­thing I’d love to do in the fu­ture.

You scored your first league goal for three years against Las Pal­mas back in Septem­ber. Was it a big re­lief to fi­nally hit the back of the net again? I’ve never been ob­sessed with scor­ing goals, to be hon­est, as there are other play­ers here who are bet­ter in front of goal than me. I’m here to pro­vide the as­sists and cre­ate dan­ger in the fi­nal third. If I can help with the odd goal, great, but I like cre­at­ing them more.

Was it your choice to take the No.16 shirt at Sevilla this term, the num­ber of An­to­nio Puerta be­fore his death? It was as much a de­ci­sion by the fans as any­thing else. As I’m a home­grown player and grew up play­ing along­side An­to­nio, we shared a lot of very good times to­gether. An­to­nio al­ways gave ev­ery­thing out on the pitch, so I think they wanted me to take his num­ber as they know that I’ll give the max­i­mum for him, that shirt and Sevilla. I’m very proud to wear the shirt in his hon­our.

What would rep­re­sent an ex­cel­lent 2017-18 sea­son for the Ro­ji­blan­cos? We have to make sure that we qual­ify for the Cham­pi­ons League. A club like Sevilla has to be in there ev­ery sea­son.

What is your most spe­cial mem­ory from your time at Manch­ester City? It’s tough to pick one, be­cause I loved my time with City. We won the league ti­tle in my first sea­son there, and the League Cup when I scored in the fi­nal. Play­ing and liv­ing in a for­eign coun­try was a very pos­i­tive ex­pe­ri­ence for me.

You of­ten played at right-back un­der Pep Guardi­ola – how did you find it? [Laughs] I ac­tu­ally quite en­joyed it. I’d not played there much in the past, but in my first spell with Sevilla I played in front of Dani Alves, so you have to get used to cov­er­ing him! That helped me when it came to play­ing as a gen­uine right-back in the Premier League. I’m happy to be fur­ther for­ward now, but I’ll play any­where – even cen­tre-back!

Do you think you can get back into the Spain squad for the World Cup? Ev­ery week in La Liga I’m giv­ing my all. Hope­fully that gets no­ticed. It would be great to go to an­other World Cup.

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