Q&A with Marcos González

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Chile’s group has been described as a nightmare group for Australia, with Spain seen has the biggest hurdle for them. How is the group perceived from a Chilean perspective? Is it intimidating having both the 2010 World Cup finalists in your group?

The truth is that the group will be challenging for all four teams. I don’t think any team wants to be disqualified from the World Cup without giving their best from the beginning. It’s not intimidating to have both World Cup finalists in the group, because we have practiced as hard as any other team. The reality is that everything can change in the end, nothing is written in stone.

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Do you think Spain is playing to the same level and are the clear favourites, or is the team easier to beat?

Spain is the current World Cup champion, but I don’t know if this time they will win again. I’m sure they will try their hardest and they will definitely show off their skills.

Chile surprised people with an impressive performance at Wembley, winning 2-0 against England. Can we expect more stellar performances in Brazil?

The match against England was our opportunity to measure ourselves against a strong European rival. Before that we’d only had the chance to play against other South American teams. We’ve been practicing hard, and getting a slot in the World Cup has shown that we are more than ready to play against any team.

Since your new coach Jorge Sampaoli took over, La Roja has experienced a turn of fortune and recorded the best ever run of results in FIFA World Cup™ qualifying campaign. What has changed since Sampaoli joined, does he have different style of coaching that works better for the squad?

Sampioli joined the team because of his great work over the years. He has had great performances with the University of Chile club under his wing. This has translated to us and I think that’s the reason the team is so strong.

Alexis Sanchez has come into his own this season at FC Barcelona, stepping up his performance. How important is Sanchez to Chile?

I respect Alexis for what he’s achieved and his great performance is no news, he’s been doing well for a long time. What most people haven’t noticed is that he’s shown strong performances in every team he’s belonged to, and that’s the reason he made it to his current team. He is a great player and performs that way in every match.

The Brazilian climate is going to be a challenge for some European teams. Will Chile have an advantage being accustomed to a South American climate?

I don’t know if we are going to have an advantage, because every player usually plays in different countries so most of us are used to different climates.

What do you think about the new Chile kits from PUMA? How about the new PWR ACTV technology that is within the shirts?

The technology used in the Chilean shirts is exceptional, it’s essential to be comfortable so we can move, run and score with no problem. As in any sport there is a great challenge, which is to help athletes perform their best and PUMA has done that by using the PWR ACTV technology in our shirts. The PUMA kits are great, they are made with the highest quality standards that athletes look for nowadays.

Who in your opinion are your favourites for this tournament?

Well, my favorite of course is Chile, we are here to win.

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