Thibaut Courtois revelled in his match-winning performance for Real Madrid against Liverpool and demanded "respect on my name".
The Belgian international had enjoyed a tough first season at Real but after that has become an integral part of the club, particularly with an occasionally vulnerable back line.
While Real had Vinicius Jr. to thank for the only goal of the game that separated them from Liverpool as they won the Champions League for the 14th time in their history, it was Courtois who delivered perhaps the most important individual performance of the night, pulling off a string of excellent saves that denied Liverpool a single goal from more than 20 efforts.
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Speaking after the match, Courtois was keen to point out that he had contributed in a way that many doubters had said was beyond him.
“Thank you very much. I said at the press conference yesterday that when Madrid play in finals, they win,” he began.
“I saw a lot of tweets saying I would get humbled. It was the other way round. Today I needed to win a final - for my career, for all the hard work,
to put respect on my name because I don’t think I have enough respect, especially in England. I saw a lot of criticism that I was not good enough or whatever.
“I’m just really happy and proud of the performance of the team, and when I needed to be there I was there for the team. We have beaten the best clubs in the world, together with us. Liverpool were very strong today. I think I played a great game and that was the difference.”
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