Interviewer: David, some young players these days seem to think they’ve achieved success as soon as they start playing in the first team. Was that the case with you?

Football player: Well, I wouldn’t say so. I’ve achieved a lot as a footballer, but there has never been a moment when I’d sit back and think “I’ve made it”. I was brought up to believe that until you retire, you don’t look back. I just stayed focused to advance my career. I’ve noticed that many young players today feel the same. I’m glad that so many of them try hard because it can help them get to the very top, just like it helped me!

Interviewer: You gave your football fans some unforgettable moments, like your legendary shot from the halfway line.

Football player: It was one of the decisive moments in my career. I still remember the goalkeeper’s astonishment and that friendly buzz of the crowd. Even today I am thrilled when I watch the film one of my fans made of the kick. The ball is in the air and in the crowd I can see my mum, my dad and my sister watching excitedly as the ball drops towards the goal. I was so happy that they were in the stadium and could see it live. Sharing this moment with them was the best. It really made my day.

Interviewer: Although you no longer play professionally, the tabloids love you. What’s the weirdest story you’ve read about yourself?

Football player: There’s a different one every morning and most of them are pure fiction. One of the tabloids said I was living in London and travelling up to Manchester every day when I was playing there. Another one wrote that I buy diamonds after every match. But when I read that I used to stay in different hotels than the rest of the English team, I couldn’t stop laughing! It was complete nonsense! Surprisingly, they didn’t write much about the penalty kick I took against Portugal and missed.

Interviewer: There is some controversy over the money footballers get... Should players get a bonus of £300,000 for winning the World Cup?

Football player: For a start, I didn’t get £300,000. I got a lot less. But it has to be remembered that there is money in football and professional players are paid high salaries everywhere in the world no matter if they win or lose. Before the Cup I was involved in the bonus negotiations because I was the captain and obviously we wanted the bonus to be as high as possible. Who wouldn’t? But that was not the most important thing for the players. Representing your country at the World Cup is the ambition of every football player, so the chance to make history is a much more powerful incentive than the money offered.

Interviewer: I see. And the last question. Can you tell us how you feel about being retired? What are your plans for the future?

Football player: I spend a lot of time in my soccer academy, so I really don’t feel that I’ve retired. And for me retiring is part of our lives so I’ve never worried about it. I’m sure that when I’m no longer involved in football, another interesting chapter of my life will begin! And as for plans... I rarely make them.

Interviewer: Thank you.
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