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COPA AMÉRICA | FALCAO

"Teams have started to see us differently after the World Cup"

"Teams have started to see us differently after the World Cup"

Carl Recine

REUTERS

The Colombia captain is fully focused on the Copa América after a difficult season at Manchester United.

Radamel Falcao is smiling again. He's back home and he has only one thing on his mind: the Copa América. With his national team, despite an underwhelming season at Old Trafford, Falcao is a different animal: captain, the team's reference point, and a fixture in the first 11. It will be exciting to see him playing alongside James Rodríguez again after a serious knee injury prevented Falcao from playing in the World Cup in Brazil.

The difficult days are behind José Pékerman's team and fresh challenges lie ahead. The squad convened to undergo medical tests in Bogotá and they will travel to Argentina to prepare for Colombia's tournament opener against Venezuela on June 14.

Is your future at Monaco?

"Right now I'm thinking only about the Copa, there has been a lot of talk but I'm relaxed about it. My agent is the one who takes care of all of that."

A difficult year at Manchester United.

"The people have been amazing, showing me a lot of affection. I haven't let that get to me too much either because one of the main objectives for this year was the Copa and I wanted to make the most of every minute, every second, to arrive with the national team in good shape."

How do you deal with the emotional side?

"Like any other worker at a company. These are things that happen at your place of work."

Colombia.

"We're in good shape, getting ready, starting the process towards the opening game, waiting for a few players who haven't arrived yet, but this team is focused on what it wants to achieve and where we're going."

Are Colombia favourites?

"We don't see ourselves in that way, but other teams have started to look at us differently after what we did at the World Cup, it's something we have to get used to. I think we are sufficiently mature to not think of ourselves as more than we are, we have to work hard to challenge for the Copa and we're ready to do that."

Playing Brazil again...

"It's not about revenge. If we win they're not going to give us back the chance to play in the World Cup semi-finals so it doesn't mean anything. We have to play and we'll go out to win as we always do, but for us and not for any kind of revenge."

Bogotá preparation.

"During these days we're simply doing the normal medical tests, but when we get to Argentina we'll start to look at our opponents in detail."

Strong attack but injuries in defence.

"For us it makes us relaxed that our forwards are in good form, that they're all playing and feeling important. As for the centre backs we've had the same issue before and we knew how to handle it, the squad has responded when it's been needed and so we're not really worried about that either."

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