Relationship with Luis Enrique: “Luis Enrique? I do not want to be angry with anyone, I would like to have a good relationship with him. Work with him? That is already very difficult. I would not be here without him. The situation is sad. It hurts a lot, it is very unpleasant. I don’t know yet why Luis Enrique told me he didn’t count on me. They have been very exceptional circumstances, it’s something that I wish hadn’t happened, as I said at the time. “Signing for the Premier: “Luis Enrique didn’t want to take me to the Premier.”Role change with Luis Enrique: “That Luis Enrique is my second coach ever? Have we ever made the joke (laughs). It’s very difficult, there are too many things in between.”First coach: “The fact of being a first coach has come to me ahead of time. It was not in my head to see me in this situation. Life surprises you. I did not consider this for a few years. It is true that I always had the illusion of having been first coach and to become professional, but it was not at all in my mind to see me in this situation. Football surprises you, life surprises you. “Return to the Selection: “I would love to be a Spanish coach again. It would be wonderful.” National Team Players: “With some player of the National Team I keep talking, let’s see if I bring someone to Monaco (laughs). After the start, many players from the National Team and many people from the RFEF wrote me.Euro 2020: “I want Spain to win the Eurocup. In the months I was there, I saw the team grow. That is what I think about that. Then another thing happens that I said and did, which is that at the time Luis wanted to return I was going to take a step to the side. Even knowing that this meant disappearing from the play I was consistent with that. “Casillas, next president of the Federation:“Casillas president of the RFEF? Why not, I would do well.”Who would you vote for, Rubiales or Casillas ?: “I don’t have to vote.”In August, he said Rubiales was the best president in the world: “I said that at that time. I have no reproach. In life when you keep anger inside, who is hurt is the one who keeps it.”Monaco proposal: “Monaco told me that it was their only option and that made me opt for them. Monaco told me that my way of facing the National Team’s exit helped to come.”Offers: “I have had offers from almost 5 continents.”Mbappé to Madrid: “If Mbappe will go to Madrid? I hope he and Neymar.”The best coach in the world: “A mixture of Klopp and Guardiola”.
Having made the cut in the test event in Rio, Dipa Karmakar had just three months to fine-tune herself for the biggest sporting stage in the world. The 22-year-old Commonwealth Games bronze medallist says she has put in the extra yards to make up for the lack of time and is confident of putting up a solid show at the Olympics. (Exclusive: Gymnast Dipa Karmakar reveals her strict training schedule, favourite food)”I did not have much time to prepare for the Games, but I have done the best I could. I have been working day and night. I will give it my best shot,” she said. (My next objective is an Olympics medal, says Dipa Karmakar)Dipa’s qualification for the Games, in itself, is a huge achievement, considering the country lacks a proper system to groom aspiring gymnasts.DIFFICULT TIMESDipa started her gymnastics journey from Tripura where the best available facility was a dingy hall in Agartala, the capital of the northeastern state. Cockroaches and rats were permanent residents of the hall. But that did not deter Dipa from excelling in the sport.She wasn’t very serious about gymnastics initially, but a medal in 2007 at a junior national event ignited a passion for the sport.Fast forward to 2016, and she will be the only gymnast representing India at the Olympics.”I want to help gymnastics reach a whole new level in the country. My qualification has helped the sport garner a lot of attention. I hope my efforts in Rio will boost the sport in India,” she said.advertisementDipa never fails to credit her coach of 15 years, Bisweshwar Nandi.”I have faced a lot of hardships and sir has always been there by my side. I did not have proper facilities to train and it was never easy for me,” she said.AIMING FOR GLORYThe 22-year-old has garnered more attention in the last few months than she has, perhaps, in her whole life. The ever-smiling and soft-spoken athlete does not want to get buried under the weight of expectations.”Rio Olympics is the just the beginning. I have the 2018 Commonwealth Games and then the 2020 Olympics. I have a very long way to go. Rio is not the be-all and end-all,” she said.Dipa will be taking part in four events at the Games: vault, balance beam, floor exercise and uneven bars, with the vault being her forte. She has been training in the Capital at the Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium.Dipa’s most lethal weapon remains the Produnova vault which she hopes to attempt successfully at the Games.”My practice is going on well and I am trying to improve on that. It will be great if I could land the Produnova,” she said.”I have received a lot of support from SAI. They imported a new apparatus from France for me,” Dipa added.