Courtois relishing challenge
Thibaut Courtois is relishing the challenge after joining Atletico Madrid on loan from Chelsea.
Last Updated: 26/07/11 5:11pm
Teenage goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois is relishing the challenge after joining Atletico Madrid on loan from his new club Chelsea.
The Belgian recently arrived at Stamford Bridge from Genk but will spend the impending campaign on loan at Atletico, who were in the market for a new keeper following David De Gea's departure to Manchester United.
And the 19-year-old is eager to make his mark in Spain following his arrival with the Primera Liga outfit.
Courtois said at his presentation: "I'm very excited. I have to work very hard to show that I'm capable of winning the trust of the coach.
"On a personal level I want to grow here. I'm know it won't be easy. There is a lot of competition for the goalkeeper's position and I must give my best to prove myself."
Regarding his future, the 6ft 6in teenager said: "I would like to stay here. I want to focus on having a good season and then it would be great to stay two or three years here."
Courtois will wear De Gea's old number 13 shirt as he competes with Sergio Asenjo and Joel for a starting berth at the Vicente Calderon.
"Joel and Asenjo are two great goalkeepers. Atletico Madrid are a big team and they have to have the goalkeepers position well covered. Having competition in goal is good because it makes everyone one of us give their best," Courtois was quoted as saying on Atletico's official website.
"The club have given me this number. It carries a lot of weight because it's the number that the previous goalkeeper wore. I only hope to be at that level."
He continued: "I've always had two role models in my career. One is (Iker) Casillas and the other is (Edwin) Van der Sar. I think that I have a style similar to his. Now I want to focus on my work and fight to win things with this club."
Courtois is also relishing the possibility of playing in front of 55,000 fans at the Vicente Calderon, saying: "The pressure is something that doesn't affect me - it's something that I think makes me play better."