Xabi Alonso has offered no shortage of praise for coach José Mourinho and team-mate Cristiano Ronaldo in an interview with the latest issue of Champions Magazine.
The midfielder also analysed the contrast of styles of Real Madrid, the Spanish national side and Barcelona.
Mourinho: "He's a leader. When a team supports their coach and believes in the ideas he brings to them, that is a true leader. And that's what our coach is, for me he is one of the best coaches in the world. I am always struck by his ability to empathise with the players, that's something that's very difficult to manage. He has an incredible grasp of a variety tactics, and can use them all in a single game."
Cristiano Ronaldo: "He is the most ambitious player I have met, with the hunger and desire to score in every game. He is impressive in terms of his athletic qualities and his technical abilities. He is a complete player: he has a great shot; he knows how to put his opponent off balance in one-on-one situations; he's great at finding space and he has great timing."
Different styles of play: "Tiki taka is not our style. We have a clear objective, which is to get into the other team's area. With Real Madrid we change the play around very quickly, with long passes that create a lot of chances. The Spain team is different, our football is based on moving the ball around until we create a goalscoring chance."
His role in the team: "My position is key. A central midfielder can never go hiding, he has to be involved in every move, he needs to be concentrated and play at his best for the whole 90 minutes. Tactical understanding is vital: you need to know how to approach games tactically because any variation can change the balance of the match."
'La Décima': "It shouldn't turn into an obsession, because that doesn't work well for you, but it's an important objective. We know it's been a number of years since Madrid last won the European Cup, but it isn't an easy competition to win, because we are competing against the top clubs in Europe."