We would like to thank Rubén Blanco goalkeeper for Real Club Celta for giving us this interview.
How did you start playing soccer?
I started playing soccer when I was 5 years old, and I have always played as a goalkeeper. I decided to be a goalkeeper because my father gave me a pair of goalkeeper gloves for Christmas.
Tell us about your soccer career until you reached the Celta de Vigo first division team
I started playing in the lower categories of the UD Santa Marina, a Vigo team, until I signed for Celtic. I played in all the lower categories until I reached the team at 16 years old. I played for three years and at 19 I was ascended to the first division team.
How is the Celtic inside?
The Celtic is like a family, we are from this hometown and we have been playing together for many years. Most of us know each other from the lower Celtic categories. Being in Second division, in the most difficult moments for the club, we opted for people from our own neighborhood and since then we have maintained this base with which we have managed to ascend to first and consolidate in the category.
Did you expect things to go the way they are going?
When you are young, you always dream of becoming a professional soccer player and playing in the first Celtic team. Always knowing that it is very difficult to achieve it, and you see how colleagues who try as hard as or harder than you do not get in. Being able to be a professional soccer player and live from what you love is a gift. I value it every day and enjoy it.
What did it feel like to debut in La Liga?
It was one of the best moments, not only as a soccer player but also on a personal level. I debuted at 17 years old, without waiting for it and at a critical moment for the club since we were fighting not to descend to second division. In the end we managed to save ourselves and it is a memory that I will never forget.
How would you define yourself as a goalkeeper?
Personally, I do not like to define myself, but I like complete goalkeepers, who dominate all game situations and that is what I would aspire to be like and to work hard to achieve it.
Which rival has impressed you the most?
Maybe Messi or Cristiano, because everything they do seems simple yet it isn’t.
What model of gloves do you wear?
I use the Eskudo Hybrid roll/gecko model.
I like gloves that do not prevent the natural movements of my hand, and the neoprene on the back gives me that. And with the hybrid cut I feel very comfortable.
And how many gloves do you usually wear a year?
1 pair every 2-3 games. During the week I used the same gloves I am going to play with.
What advice would you give to a young goalkeeper who was starting to play soccer?
The most important thing is to enjoy what they are doing, make friends and have fun. From there they need to work hard and strive to achieve the goals set. If they don’t enjoy what they do, they will end up hating what they love.
And the hardest thing for a goalkeeper?
Personally, I think that the most difficult thing for the goalkeeper is to be focused for 90 minutes, because you never know when it’s going to be your turn to act and you have to always be prepared both mentally and physically to respond well.