Ricardo, despite your experience and your achievements, you are like a young excited kid here at Monaco. How have you enjoyed the start of the season?
I'm really enjoying it. Our results have been positive, I have settled into the team very well and physically, I feel in good shape. I had a good preseason, found some form early and the body has followed, I feel very positive. I feel like I have an important role to play in the team and I'm loving being out on the pitch.
After four matches, AS Monaco FC are leading the league. How have you judged the opening matches?
We have made a great start and that wasn't easy to imagine given all the changes at the club over the summer. Obviously we have a lot of quality, with a lot of experienced players and some exciting youngsters but that isn't always enough to create a team. We are still constructing and when that's the case, it's always great to be winning matches, to win points. For the confidence, there's nothing better than winning matches. The biggest thing from the opening matches has been the team's spirit. We are a real squad and we want to succeed.
Against Marseille, you had a great battle with Gignac... How was that challenge?
Like the rest of the team, I was totally focused. Gignac is a really physical player, as is André Ayew, and we had to be careful to give them as little space as possible. I think I did okay, even if there were a couple of moments in the first half. We talked a lot on the pitch and we reacted well to all the situations.
This week, there's the international break. Is it good to have a week off after a month of competition?
Personally I would have preferred to keep on playing because the team is on a good dynamic and physically, I feel in great shape. But overall, the break is welcome after all the efforts of the last couple of months in the summer heat. It's a chance to recover and for others to treat any little niggles.
You were part of the Champions League draw in Monaco last week. How did that come about?
I's very simple really. The draw was held in Monaco and UEFA hadn't forgotten that it was ten years ago this season that FC Porto defeated AS Monaco FC in the final. I was invited by the organisers and I was very flattered to accept. Since I was already in Monaco, I didn't have to do anything special, ahead of the trip to Marseille, so I gratefully accepted.