Laen: Not bad to start in SpainArticle
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Ciudad Real's Torsten Laen talks to about his possibilities and objectives in the team.

Laen: Not bad to start in Spain

While it is no new experience to either Ciudad Real or THW Kiel to reach the Champions League finals – actually the winners from the previous two years will meet – the finals will be something absolutely new to Ciudad Real’s pivot Torsten Laen.

Laen can only play in attackThe 28-year old line player and defence specialist, who arrived from Danish champion GOG Svendborg TGI, is really looking forward to the finals. talks to Laen who played 126 internationals for Denmark but was left out of the European champion squad. Many people say that the finals against Kiel are ‘dream finals’ of the best teams in the Champions League. Do you agree?

Torsten Laen: Yes, and I think so. It is clear as these will be matches will be played by the the champions of Spain and Germany. Both teams are on the way to win the national titles once again in the two strongest leagues of the World. It’s got to be a fantastic final. You will start at home, which is generally considered to be a disadvantage. What do you think about it?

Torsten Laen: Actually, we are quite content with it. You always have to get as good result as possible in the first leg, no matter if you play at home or away. Anyway, we can’t possibly play under more pressure in Kiel than in Hamburg, so we are prepared. Usually the team with more players have an advantage at such equal matches. You seem to have a broader squad…

Torsten Laen: We may be able to take advantage of that, but then again, you have to remember that Kiel managed to win the Champions League last year with only eight players fit for the finals! You had injuries in the semi-finals. What is the situation with them?

Dinart is a great defender, Laen still has to improveTorsten Laen. They were okay apart from David Davis who suffered a concussion, but he too is also fit to play again. Personally, you played a lot in the attack this season, but not nearly as much in defence – although you were known as a strong and tough defender in Denmark. Does it surprise you?

Torsten Laen: Yes, in a way and I’m in constant dialogue with the coach about this. So far, I played in attack most of the season, while Didier Dinart took care of the defensive work. There is no doubt that I will have to develop my defensive game even further in order to be able to compete in the Spanish League and at an international level. You are the only Danish player in the Champions Leage finals this year. Is this a kind of consolation for you after not playing in the Danish team at the Euro?

Torsten Laen: You might say so. Of course, I really wanted to be a part of that fantastic triumph in Norway, but playing the CL finals is really important too. It and may be some kind of compensation for me. The CL finals will also give you a chance to prove Ulrik Wilbek that he should call you up for the Olympic squad. Or did you give up on the Olympics already?

Torsten Laen: Of course the national team is quite far away for me, as the two pivots, Michael V. Knudsen and Jesper Nøddesbo, play practically all the time in their club teams, European top clubs (SG Flensburg Handewitt and FC Barcelona, ed.). So I simply concentrate on doing as well as possible here in Spain, hoping that this will draw Wilbek’s attention to me.

TEXT: Peter Bruun