Pau Torres wore the Spanish national team shirt again. Two weeks after completing a year without playing in red, the Aston Villa defender returned to the starting eleven thanks to Luis de la Fuente. “When you don’t have something, that’s when you really value it”, confesses the now defender to MARCA hours after signing his second ‘debut’ with Spain, who arrives with twelve games as a starter in the Premier League’s big reveal.

The time has come to return…
Yes, yes, just a year, since the game against Japan in the World Cup. I went through not coming for the first two, returning for the next two but without playing and now playing again. Very happy to be back, to be there and, of course, to play and be able to help the team win.
How did everything change to return to the national team?
Everything is going well with the team. When you stop coming there is no choice but to give everything to your club in order to regain the coach’s trust.

Another coach arrived and I decided that others would come.

Were you overwhelmed by not coming? What does it mean to be on the national team?
The national team is what we all want to achieve one day. It’s very difficult to be on the list and have continuity. It’s the goal of everything. Another coach arrived and I decided that others would come. In these moments, all you need to do is work. There is no more. The selection is the best and when you are not there is when you realize the value it has. It seems like you’re always arriving and suddenly…
The feeling that the team conveys at this moment is one of tranquility, of power with everything after everything that has happened…
There is a mix of different generations, young people on the one hand and others with experience, but both have in common that at their clubs they are used to winning, that they have that competitive gene and this ends up being noticed. A strong and compact group has been formed that can compete against anyone on equal terms.
And all this came back after taking the step of leaving Villarreal…
Villarreal is my home, but I saw that I had to do something, that I had to leave, look for another place and the ideal place was the Premier and everything is going very well. I have all the confidence in Unaí, the coach who got the best of me a long time ago, the team is close to the top four and when they have already passed it is no coincidence that the team is up there. Aston Villa is serious. It’s a reflection of good work.

Luis Enrique has very clear ideas and with them we achieved good results, beating great teams. We believe in him and I sincerely believe that he has been very tough on him,

Luis Enrique was almost killed with a knife.
We had complete trust in Luis Enrique. He is a top coach. He has very clear ideas and with them we achieved good results, beating great teams. We believe in him and I sincerely believe they have been very hard on him, but come on, he is more than prepared and it doesn’t affect him too much.
What is life like for Pau Torres in Birmingham?
Adaptation is always difficult, they are difficult. I left home, from Vila Real, to another country, another competition, but I have had all the trust of the club, Unaí and my teammates. We Latinos move together. There’s Dibu Diego Carlos, Alex Moreno, Douglas, Buenda, Durón… we get along very well, but above all, families get together when we’re away and deal better with absences. We are adapted and enjoying English football.
And the Unai Emery factor, right?
Of course of course. Unai is very important in every way. He brings out the best in me and understands me perfectly.

We are showing that Aston Villa are not a flash in the pan,

Do you dream of doing something important at Premier?
The days go by and we show that this is not a flash in the pan, that there is important work behind this and that for now it allows us to be at the top.
Some paella must have already fallen in love with the Latin group, right?
What goes, what goes. I’m having trouble finding the right ingredients and with Brexit they can’t ship them from home. We continue searching. Some will fall soon. We are looking for a way to do this soon.


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