Simon Kjær interview before AC Milan vs Inter
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Simon Kjær interview before AC Milan vs Inter

Interview: TV3 Sport · 9 May 2023

Simon Kjær interview with Danish media ahead of the Champions League match between AC Milan and Inter. Watch the full interview and find the first part of the English translation below. Stay tuned for more.

Simon Kjær interview

You're also getting to the point where, not to fight for your existence here, but somehow show that you still have many years to offer this club.

Simon Kjær: "Yes, but it's in the everyday, it's in the work I put in every day and then of course the matches also have an influence, because it depends on how well you play, that's where you're measured, but I don't think the club is in doubt about my attitude. They can see how professional I am, they can see how much I want this, and I've also tried too much to say that I'm thinking many years into the future. As I said last time I was injured, it was at the weirdest time in relation to where I actually was in my career. But I can't see at this point why I should stop in the near future. When I can see how much there is to gain all the time. Physically and mentally. And the whole process. How much you can actually gain all the time. So it's a myth that you're old. When you're 34, it's not true that you're old. It's only in your head. When you're old, it's in your head - because the body is still fine and I'm feeling good, so I have many years left in football. Also at the top level, so I'm not planning to stop soon."

So you expect to stay here beyond 2024?

Simon Kjær: "Yes, I hope so. It's two parties, a coach and many things that come into play. But I will certainly do my part. This is where I want to end, this is the club I've always dreamed of ending up in. So I also hope to end here, but not anytime soon."

How long can you wait with peace of mind? Is it also into next season?

Simon Kjær: "Yes, I can... I have no stress at all. No stress. One of the things I've learned from being injured is to take one day at a time. Really live. What the days give you and what the days offer you. They can be good and they can be bad. But the bad days, those are the days where you have to find the percentages. Because those days are maybe more about the discipline of getting things done. The day you have motivation, you do the training, but it's the hard days where you don't really feel like working that the work needs to be put in. And that's where you separate the sheep from the goats (Danish slang) in my opinion. That's where you get the percentages. So that's the way I live my life. Football-wise. I know what's coming to me on the 9th... no, the 10th... and the 16th, but I also know what's coming on Wednesday. I know what's coming on Saturday. It's a process, but those are the days I live. So if I live that way, I can't think about the 25th, 26th, 27th. I will get nothing out of it. It's not something I have control over."

Do you have to work harder for it now, do you feel, than you did 10 years ago?

Simon Kjær: "No, it's two completely different lifestyles. It's two different choices. How you choose to live. If you can find peace, if you can find joy in the way you work hard or where you don't work hard... I thought I worked hard when I was younger. I didn't. So there's always something you can change. There's always something you can do to get better. And that's what drives me, too. I think it's cool. I mean, the days where you suffer and those things, the feeling you have when you come home that it was a good workout, and you got done what you needed to do. Then you wake up the next day and you're pretty smashed, and have to do it again, but I love the process in it."


PART 2

Is it cool to face an opponent in the Champions League semi-final, like Inter, with whom you share the stadium, and who you know so well inside and out?

Simon Kjær: "I couldn't see a better opponent. For Italian football, for Milano, for Inter and for Milan. A fantastic match. It's going to be crazy. It will be so cool and we are both in a good place, so it is good for Italian football and for Milan. It is good for the clubs. But let's hope we end up on the right side."

What does it mean that you know each other so well? What do you think this will mean?.

Simon Kjær: "It will be a very tactical match, but at the same time there will also be an aspect called nerves, and nervousness and these things, and it only does that when it enters the Champions League, then it might not be who is the best football player, but it is who has control over his head. So, it will be a huge factor in these games."

How do you feel about the rivalry? Because you've played some tough matches in Istanbul, I assume, where maybe there's even more at stake, it felt like. I don't think... This is not a bad derby if you can follow me in that?

Simon Kjær: "Absolutely. It's like two siblings (Inter/Milan), who love each other and who hate each other, but you need each other. But there´s s also no one they would rather beat, when they´re up against each other. But the day after, we can clap each other on the shoulders, and talk about things. So I feel it's a healthy derby, but at the same time, when the derbies are there, it's also some crazy derbies. It's definitely at the top, in the sense of mood in terms of how much pressure there is. The Istanbul derbies are another derby. It's more hate. It's quite a feeling, because they don't want anything good for each other. Inter and Milan really want that. So it's an insane derby and I'm looking forward to it."


Many thanks to Randi for the English translation.

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