PSV Eindohoven attacking midfielder of Nigerian descent Noni Madueke says he is determined to become the best in Europe even as he hopes to combine the qualities of his long time idol, Cristiano Ronaldo.
The 19 year old England junior international grew up idolising Ronaldo and wants to bring the Portugal star’s unique qualities to his game.
Ronaldo completed his £19.7million return to Manchester United from Juventus on Tuesday, 12 years after he left Old Trafford for Real Madrid.
Boyhood United fan Madueke is preparing for England Under-21s’ trip to Romania for a friendly on Friday and uses Ronaldo as an inspiration.
“I grew up watching him (Ronaldo). What he did was inspiring and to be still doing it now is testament to how hard he works,” said the 19-year-old, who has four goals in nine games for PSV this season.
“He is the biggest inspiration for someone who is confident but backs it up on the pitch every time he steps out.
“All my idols – people like Neymar, Ronaldo, Messi and the new generation guys like Mbappe play with a confident. That is something I like and try to implement in my game as well.
“I have high expectations of myself. To me I feel I can be one of the best players in the league and that’s what I want to do. I want to do well for my team. We have already won the Super Cup, got a taste of what it is to win something.
“I want to make sure I am as important to this team (under-21s) as my team back home at club level. We have to keep that mindset and hunger and competitive desire, and there is talent enough for us to be successful.”
Madueke signed a new four-year deal at the Philips Stadium last week, ending speculation linking him with to a return to England.
Tottenham, Leicester and Wolves were reportedly keen with Madueke having left Spurs in 2018 to join PSV in his quest for a fast track to the first team.
But, despite his new contract, the Barnet-born youngster admitted he would like to play in the Premier League in the future.
“Yeah, definitely. The Premier League is the best league in the world and every young English player wants to be there,” said Madueke, who is also eligible to play for Nigeria.
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