In football, every performance is judged: the final score, the goals you keep out of the net, and the trophies you and your team win every year. They’re the ultimate reward for all the hard work we put into this game.
What does it mean to be the best keeper? Is it to win the most trophies or claim the most clean sheets across a season? I’d rather win 1-4 like yesterday than draw with 0-0. To me, football is always an 11-player game. That’s why individual trophies are not that important to me. That being said, not all individual trophies are the same. You can’t really compare a World Cup Golden Glove to The Best FIFA Goalkeeper. The latter is more about popularity, whereas the Golden Glove is judged by a panel of experts: people who value position play, your ability to counter high balls, etc. Although Belgium came in third in 2018, my name was added to the list of iconic goalkeepers like Neuer, Casillas or Buffon. To show your skills at that level and prove that you belong there is a big deal to me.
The best part about playing as a team is to see our efforts pay off. Winning a trophy or the title is our common goal. For an entire season, we really have to work together to win as often as possible. That’s why every trophy has its own sentimental value. Winning the title with Real Madrid, the title with KRC Genk, The Europa League with Atlético Madrid or two Premier Leagues with Chelsea FC are all equally important to me. But winning trophies or titles isn’t all there is to a career. Your last month of playing is what people will remember, so you have to perform well in every match.
Of course, there’s one more trophy I’d like to add to my trophy case. Winning the upcoming Champions League with Real Madrid is at the top of my list. Last time, nobody thought we would make it to the semi-finals, but we made it through anyway. With that many experienced and motivated players, we’re determined to get as far as possible. Our team’s ready for it!