Malo Gusto: "I want to as many titles as possible with OL"
How did you feel after signing your first professional contract?
It's been a huge source of pride for me and my family. I have been waiting for this moment since I was little. But this is only the beginning, I have to keep working, this is only one step. I know I can do more.
What has it changed for you, both in training and during the matches?
Once you sign this contract, you have to be serious about everything you do, whether it's on or off the pitch. It’s very important if you want to be a great player.
You are the 3rd player of the 2003 generation to sign a professional deal after Cherki and Da Silva, was that a motivation for you?
Yes, they've been ahead of me and I've always wanted to follow their progress. I am very happy for them too and that proves that this 2003 generation is really a great generation.
Besides those of your generation, there are a lot of young players in the first team, is that a point of satisfaction too?
Yes, it shows that the Academy is performing very well, that the work done there is very good. It's good to be able to play with others ho have come through the Academy, as we've known each other for a long time. We've become good friends.
You are training with the first team now, how were you welcomed?
Very well! There are some really good players and it's a lot easier to adjust when that's the case, and everyone has been nice to me. I've worked a lot with the defenders and Marcelo, Jason, Léo, and Sinaly are always there to advise me.
What makes the difference from what you have experienced playing with the reserves?
Concentration, technique, determination etc. there really is a world of difference. You quickly realize that, and you have to get up to speed quickly otherwise it is tough. I've learned to put myself in a "bubble", to stop thinking about what's going on around me since I signed my contract.
Since you joined the club in 2016 everything has happened very quickly for you ...
Yeah, that's the way things go in football -- that's why you always have to stay focused on the main goal which is to keep progressing. You have to stay determined every day.
You are a midfielder by training, how did you become a right back?At the start it was to make up the numbers after an injury in the next age group -- U17 at the time. So the coach put me at right back and I had a good match, and the coach hasn't changed my position since. At first it was tough for me and for my father too, who had always seen me play in attack and now saw me at the back. But it's still football, you have to study the position and you progress quickly.
How would you describe your style of play?
Rather attacking, punchy, powerful, fast, technically adept. And I think those are the qualities that a modern fullback should have today. I know I still have to work on my defensive positioning and tracking back.
With the end of amateur competitions your playing time is necessarily reduced with the reserves, how has this gone?
It’s really tough not to experience the atmosphere of the matches, the atmosphere of the league. We hope that it will resume as soon as possible so we must continue to work in order to prepare for it.
And finally, what would be your dream to achieve with OL?
First to score a goal and then win as many titles as possible with Olympique Lyonnais.