Yassine Bono appeared this week on A Balón Parado for Sevilla FC TV. This was an interview that focused on football but also showed the human side to the player, with the goalkeeper tearing up when he received a message from his former teammate, Tomas Vaclík, who is currently in Athens.
He also spoke about our elimination from the cup on Wednesday evening: "There is no time to ponder on the result, we have to get ready because we have a game on Saturday. The team is hurt because we are improving in many areas, but we didn't get the result we wanted. We have got to focus on the fixture tomorrow and win it. The way we are as a group and the abilities we each have means that we are on the way to being a team that makes the most of the skills at our disposal."
Furthermore, he noted that the save he made from Chimy Ávila's shot was one of his best saves, but he was as self-critical as ever about his performance: "My head wasn't in the game when I came on and that makes it more difficult to deal with crosses into the box. Funnily enough, that is how we scored. When the ball was played into Ávila I tried to make myself as big as possible to close his angle. It worked, but when the result doesn't go your way, you are let with a weird feeling. It might be one of the best saves of my career. This save came from a poor decision, as if I had come out to deal with the cross we would not be talking about this stop. The years will go by and I will say it is an amazing save, but at this moment we are focused on things getting better."
Being as humble as he is, Bono claims that he did not expect to become a role model: "Being able to make my country proud is something special. My career is based on this, a desire to show how good Moroccan footballers can be, and to open doors to those who will come in the future. I always dreamt of becoming a professional player, but I didn't think that I would achieve all of this. I am very grateful for the journey I have taken. I used to be a bit insecure, but you discover yourself over time. Through hard-work, you become more confident. It is thanks to Sevilla I took the next step in my career, they put me on the map in Europe and I feel indebted to the club, they saw that I could be one of the best for many years. With hard work, I am now considered as one of the best goalkeepers and this makes me very proud given how many years I have worked for thus. I have got to keep going and getting better to still be considered amongst the best."
He also spoke about Qatar and his performances for his country: "The World Cup was very intense and complicated for me. It was a difficult time for me personally, you get there and you know that the whole world is watching you. It was not simple, because of the concentration you need to have, and for the matches too... Moreover, I was born in Canada and I felt the pressure for this match. I didn't want us to get Spain, but we got a tie with them and I received several messages. Spain is the country where I learnt my trade and so I owe it a lot. It came at a time when I didn't feel good physically and I wanted to leave, but I had a photo of my son and this motivated me a lot. It was clear to me that I had to enjoy the game against Spain, because this is the most important thing when you play football."