Mens Team

Rodrigo: Business studies keeping me busy!

Rodrigo: Business studies keeping me busy!
Rodrigo has been exercising both body and mind during lockdown, studying for his degree in Management and Business Administration.

In addition to his training regime and spending quality time with his family, the Spaniard has been revising for upcoming exams, keeping fit both mentally and physically.

Although just 23, the midfielder says he is already planning for the future and life after football, as he explained how he is filling his time.

“It's a very difficult situation for everyone – not only in Spain, but around the whole world,” he said. “We don't know exactly what's going on, how many people are infected – nobody knows what's going to happen next.

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“We all have someone close – a friend or a family member – who has been touched somehow by the Coronavirus, so it's not easy. We try to spend our time in the best way possible.

“I thought about going back to Spain to spend the lockdown with my family, as I don't have many chances to spend time with them. It was a good opportunity to be among family. We want this situation to be solved and hopefully, it will finish soon.

“Fortunately, I have a garden, so I had the chance to go outdoors a little bit – not having to stay indoors all day. Most of the time, I spent it with my brothers, playing football in the garden, table tennis or in the swimming pool.

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“I also used the time to do homework from my university degree, as there are exams in a few days’ time. On top of that, obviously, I have been training and keeping fit.

“I can't say now what I'm going to do in the future but I'm studying a degree in Management and Business Administration because it is a challenge for me – to start a degree and finish it.

“I'm sure it's going to be helpful in the future one way or another. You never know.

“When I finish my career as a player, I'd like to stay in contact with the sports world but if it doesn't happen, that’s fine too.”

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A 2019 summer recruit, Rodrigo also reflected on his first months with the Club, including his lessons of Premier League life, and credited Brazilian fan favourite Fernandinho for his part in aiding in the Spaniard’s adaptation.

“The first challenge obviously was to adapt to the Premier League game,” he admitted. “It's another style of football.

“You can't take a breath or relax during the 90 minutes – not even for one second.

“I realised straight away that in this league you need to think really quickly. I tried to adapt my game in the first games of the season.

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“When I got the pace of the Premier League, I also started adapting my game and my skills to the team.

“It wasn't easy because we have lots of attacking players but we need to defend as well. One of my biggest responsibilities in the team is specifically that part.

Fernandinho has helped me a lot. He is now playing more often as a centre-back so that he can have a bigger picture of the game. He has helped me a lot from the back – where to find the spaces, etc.

“What I learnt the most from him is the experience he has. He's 35-years-old; he has been at the Club for seven seasons now so I listen to him a lot and try to learn a lot from him.”

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Rodrigo also hailed Pep Guardiola’s influence, deeming the Catalan boss the very best in the business.

“To me, he is the best coach in the world,” he declared. “His success speaks for himself – everything that he's won with all the clubs he's been at.

“I have learnt lots of things from him. I couldn't say only one. He has lots of experience as a player and as a coach.

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“It helps me a lot that he played in the same position as me. It's not easy for me as a young player, coming from La Liga, to fit in the Premier League with such competition, [where it’s] so strong physically, with great teams, but it has been an amazing experience this first season.

“I have learnt a lot and I have enjoyed it because we have won two trophies so far [the Community Shield and Carabao Cup] and we are still able to win two more: the FA Cup and the Champions League.

“I try to learn every day from him. He has helped me a lot, especially tactically. It's been the first time I played alone as a holding midfielder so I have to adapt to the new situation.

“I'm happy because I fit very well with the team and the Club. I feel I'm growing every day.”

Finally, Rodrigo also shared a message to the fans, urging the supporters to stay strong and follow the experts’ advice during this testing period.

“It's very difficult times for everyone – not only for football fans or sports fans,” he stated.

“We all have families and friends who are going through difficult times; lots of people are losing their loved ones, so the most important thing now is to sort out the situation with the Coronavirus.

“Once this situation is over, hopefully, we can all go back to our jobs and routines, but the priority now is to tackle the virus and sort out the situation first.

“I'd say to Man City fans and football fans that we are very excited to play football again. We are ready to enjoy football again and we are just waiting for the authorities to give us the green light.”

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