Arbeloa: We rely on ourselves to advance to the round of 16

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Real Madrid defender Álvaro Arbeloa was optimistic after the 2 – 2 Champions League draw with Borussia Dortmund Tuesday night saying “the important thing is to pass to the knockout stage. That’s everyone’s goal.”

The 29-year-old, who played at left back against the Bundesliga champions, spoke in the mixed zone of his errors, including an own goal, in the match noting “[Marco] Reus had overtaken me by half a meter and these types of players can overtake you for 90 minutes. In the second, the midfielder [Mario Götze] came from behind.”

The Spanish international remained positive in regard to his side’s performance, saying, “We had more control than we did in Dortmund. They were very lucky; they had two good chances and scored two goals. They did not create much danger.  Seeing that City did not win, the tie is not bad.”

“It costs something to play at left after so long and I have not fully recovered from injury but with so many injuries, there aren’t many options.”

Arbeloa also took the time to address the recent controversy over his words last Saturday about the Real Madrid youth system.  After saying that not all youth players are worthy of playing for the first team, he clarified by saying “The other day I did not express myself as well as I wanted. To play for Real Madrid is complicated and for the homegrown players, it is even more pronounced.”

“My words were not an attack on the youth system because the first that suffered [through it] was me. My last intention was to attack. The players support Mou to the death.”

“Over the years I understood that being a canterano is not doing the minimum. It is doing more because playing for Real Madrid is very difficult for everyone and for them even more. The important thing is that we are united and away from outside noise.

“I am old enough to say what I think. All the same, it would have been more important for my image to keep quiet.”

This article was originally published on on Nov.7, 2012.