(This interview with former FC Porto striker, the Colombian international Jackson Martínez, was made by the journalist Pedro Soares and appeared in the sports daily A Bola (10/09/15). On any copyright issues, please contact footballportugal.)
A Bola: You left FC Porto for Atlético Madrid, but do you still follow the Portuguese league? What do you think of your old team’s start to the season?
Jackson Martínez: Of course I’ve been following it. I saw the first and the second game and I think the team are going to need time. I think they’ve got a lot of good players, but the team has changed a lot. You just need to look at the team photo from last season to understand how many first-teamers aren’t there anymore – six or seven. That’s why it’s not easy for the coach [Julen Lopetegui] to set up a team like the one that had already been formed, but I‘m sure Porto will manage it. Let’s hope they can do it as soon as possible, because the new players are good and they only have to adapt to the ideas of the coach, who will have to come up with a system of play that can produce good results using them.
- What do you think of the new forwards, Pablo Osvaldo and Bueno?
- Osvaldo is a forward who had a good spell in England. He played in good clubs, and the important thing is that he and the other newcomers help FC Porto to win titles. Let’s hope that things go well, and I want to wish him and all Portistas success because I have great affection for the club, from the directors to the fans.
- Do you think that FC Porto have a chance of the title, despite so many changes?
- FC Porto are always fighting for the top spot, but it’s not easy with so many changes, although that’s not an excuse. FC Porto, like Benfica and Sporting, are teams that can win titles because they have the means to fight for them. Let’s hope that Porto can win the title and that the coach can fit the new players into the system he’s set up.
- What do you think of [coach] Jorge Jesus going from Benfica to Sporting?
- [Takes a deep breath and laughs.] A lot of things surprised me and that’s one of them, that’s true. I never imagined it could happen, but that’s football. It’s incredible really, but that’s football and he must have had his reasons for agreeing to go to Sporting. They’re things you don’t expect, a change that’s surprising, that you don’t expect because of everything those two clubs mean, but that’s football, even if the fans don’t understand …
- Do you think that Sporting have a better chance of the title under Jorge Jesus?
- I think he’s a very good coach, and all good coaches need time – a little or a lot, I don’t know – to be able to form a great team. He’s at a new club, but no one doubts that he’s a good coach.
- Colombia played [Sporting winger] Carrillo’s Peru. What do you think of your old opponent in Portugal?
- Oof, Carrillo’s an aeroplane! He’s really impressive – he has incredible speed and power. He’s a player that’s very sure in what he does. I played against him several times in Portugal, and that was a warning of the damage he could do [against Colombia].
- And [Sporting forward] Téo Gutiérrez?
- He’s a very good player. He’s going to do good things at Sporting. By the quality he’s been showing with River Plate and in the [Colombian] national team, he has everything to make it in a big league.
- How about your new life in Madrid?
- I’m adapting to the system of play and to the I Liga. Little by little I hope to be able to fit into the coach’s ideas and to offer the fruits of the good moment of form I’m having.