O L Y M P I A C O S   1 9 2 5
O L Y M P I A C O S   1 9 2 5
El Arabi: “Staying at home, I miss my teammates”

El Arabi: “Staying at home, I miss my teammates”

Interview of Olympiacos’ top scorer Youssef El Arabi at Olympiacos.org

Indeed, we are going through tough times due to the coronavirus pandemic, however the options available, according to Youssef El Arabi, are to listen to what experts say and stay at home. Our Moroccan star expresses on olympiacos.org his hope, amongst others, that the whole virus issue will be soon over, describes how he spends his time at home and reveals his selections of this season’s top goals.

We live something unprecedented; how do you and your family experience that?
“These restrictions make it very hard for us. We stay at home with the kids all the time, which is far from easy since we have to keep them busy, help them with their homework. However, it is most important to stay at home and prevent the virus spread and I hope we shall return to our normal lives very soon”.

How are things back in your country? Are you in contact with your friends and relatives?
“Every day, I am on the phone with my parents and family in Morocco. What we are going through is indeed very tough, however, we talk on the phone all the time. They ask me about our situation in Greece and I learn how things are in my country. I send my support to all Moroccans and I hope people there will pull it off against the virus. What matters the most is to follow the rules and the instructions provided by the experts”.

You now have to work out at home, instead of the pitch. How hard is it to keep fit under these circumstances?
“It is hard; we now have to work out at home and truth is that we lose our fitness. It is neither easy nor pleasant because we have very little space, but the way this pandemic has made things turn out, we have to practice to keep busy and condition ourselves. It is important to respect the rules at home and work out”.

Do you miss training with your teammates?
“Of course, I miss training with my teammates, in particular given our good campaign this year. We were in a very good state and very strong. I miss my training with the ball and hanging out with my teammates. It’s been already 2 weeks that we don’t meet at the training center. I hope we will be able to meet altogether soon”.

Before the break, our team had a certain rhythm and produced great football. There are several matches we will remember in the future. Do some stand out for you?
“The things we did this year were very good; this season’s campaign had many positive aspects. We made some great matches in Europe. We displayed well in the UEFA Europa League, knocked out some top sides and proved to be a tough-to-beat team. Olympiacos has built a good name in the UEFA Europa League and we have to continue so because we have the quality to deliver. We were also good in the championship. We finished the regular season unbeaten, it seems we are moving towards our objective and, in the end, we will win the champion’s title”.

What’s your favorite goal, although we all have a hunch about that?
“My favorite goal (laughter)? Truth is I have scored, this season, quite a few important goals, however, the one that stands out for me is that against Arsenal. It was in overtime’s last minute and it produced an amazing feeling both for me and our fans who had traveled of London to support us. I scored before our fans stand and they all saw it from close, right in front of them! We are all happy in the team with our good work and this is what matters the most, since, in a team, we are all together both in winning and losing. Until now, we have been able to do great things and live moments like the ones against Arsenal”.

Currently, it is difficult to say when we will be back in action. Our priority is to stay at home. Would you like to send a message to our fans?
“Indeed, we all the things happening now in the world is very difficult to set the date we will resume. The entire world has been hit and there is no single place left untouched. The most important thing is to respect the rules. For instance, I also have kids, we are a family staying at home and follow the government’s laws. We have elderly people in our families and we must not put them in danger; we have to stay at home and protect them. I hope the whole thing will be over soon. We will have again what we used to, so the important thing now is to follow the rules. Thus, my advice is to stay at home, not socialize, wear our masks and protect ourselves. For me, this is our priority: our families and children”.​

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