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Arda Guler: I can’t call Modric and Kroos ‘Luka’ or ‘Toni’ so i call them ‘brothers’

In the star-studded squad of Real Madrid, Arda Guler stands out not only for his exceptional skill but also for his deep-seated respect for his teammates, a quality that has quickly endeared him to both fans and peers alike. At just 18, Guler has adopted a unique way of addressing his more experienced teammates, Luka Modric and Toni Kroos, referring to them affectionately as “brother.”

The yongster turns to his older teammates by “brother” because of the values he learned growing up in Turkey. In his culture, it is important to show respect to elders, and one way to do this is by not using their first names directly. This practice reflects his respect for tradition and the teachings of his family. “I can’t call him Luka, I can’t call him Toni, they are older… I learned this in my family. I feel like I’m disrespecting them” Guler shared.

His journey to Madrid was as much about fulfilling a childhood dream as it was about stepping into a larger role envisioned by the club. “While I was on vacation, my father called and said: Real wants you. I was extremely excited!” he recalled. The decision to join Madrid was propelled by his longtime aspiration to play at the highest level. “It was my dream since I was a kid, so I was sure of my choice” he affirmed.

Real Madrid laid out a long-term plan for Guler, positioning him as the heir to Luka Modric. This vision played a crucial part in his decision to join the club. “During the negotiations last summer, Real Madrid told me that I would be Luka Modric’s heir” said Guler, indicating the club’s confidence in his potential to step into the shoes of one of football’s greatest midfielders.

In a display of commitment and respect to his roots, Guler and his representatives requested that Los Blancos pay a bit more than the €17.5 million release clause to Fenerbahçe, to which the club agreed. “I could have stayed at Fenerbahçe for one more year, but I wanted to show the world what a Turkish young man from Fenerbahçe could do in Europe” he explained, underlining his ambition and dedication.

Guler and Real Madrid face Bayern Munich tonight in the 1st leg of their Champions League semi-finals battle. The Turkish youngster has recorded only 166 minutes of playing time throughout the current season, and is yet to debut for Real in the Champions League. In the previous match, on Friday against Real Sociedad, Guler was trusted to start from the 1st minute for the very first time in LaLiga and scored the only goal of the game.