The Danish forward spoke to SPORT in an interview after signing from Leganes on 'emergency' basis
Martin Braithwaite, 28, has a lot of faith. So much that he's taking on his Barcelona move with surprising calm. He arrives for his interview with
SPORT in training gear, greeting everyone. Off the pitch, you note the Caribbean influence of his roots, on it the Nordic coolness. For Braithwaite, confidence in yourself is everything.
Do you remember the call to tell you of Barcelona's interest?
I didn't have a call directly but I had a call saying that Barcelona are really, really, really interested in you and its serious. I was driving my son home from football.
Did you tell your son?
I told no one. I was happy but didn't want to make it emotional unless it was 100 percent sure. I didn't tell my wife, she is pregnant and I didn't want to stress her with anything. I know she would be happy (though). Suddenly it came out in the media. I went to training in the morning with Leganes, I didn't have time to sit down with my wife before that evening.
What was the most emotional moment?
Different moments The moment everything was done, I just had to travel to Barcelona, for my wife and me. The next part for me personally was after I signed we were having a press conference and I had my wife and kids sitting there together with the press, I looked at them and felt something special in my heart.
They say you're a student of the game and you watched Barca players on video, what did you see?
I just see how the players play, look at how they do (things) naturally, it's more easy for me to adapt to them. If I do something they do naturally they don't have to change. I just have to be there where they put the ball.
What about how you can work with Messi?
I just have to play my game. I like to make good runs and I have the best passer in the world, so for me it's really easy.
Confidence is a key to your game, is it natural in you?
No, it's not natural. It's something I've always worked on. Everyone has dips, I'm no different than the rest. But I work with my mind to be better, to control my emotions and find out why I feel this way. If you stay in your comfort zone you don't grow. You have to leave it, when you do that you break your own limits.
Are you out of your comfort zone signing for Barca?
Yes. In a way. I don't know because it's not something I fear but I would say it's an achievement. In my book since I was 20 years old I had written it down. I wrote it down as a goal, I write my goals down. it's not something that came out of the blue. I'm still writing goals down, i have goals for the future, goals for 10 years ahead.
Do you feel pressure to perform at Barca?
I don't feel pressure from the exterior, the only pressure I have is interior. the only pressure I feel is the pressure I put on myself. I'm happy, honestly, I feel like a normal person. It could be me sitting in the stadium watching the team, so I just want to give back. I know what people want to see, I just want to give 100 percent because at the end of the day if I play a game and feel like I could have given more I cannot live with myself. People who come and pay to see me play deserve 100%. I can play a bad game but I can always give 100%.
Topics with the letter