Vinicius Junior has signalled his intent to sign a new long-term deal as he sets out to match the achievements of Cristiano Ronaldo and Sergio Ramos in a Real Madrid shirt.
Brazil international Vinicius is into his fourth season as a Madrid player and has made 135 appearances in all competitions since his debut in September 2018.
Only four Madrid players have featured more times for the club during that period – Luka Modric (138), Thibaut Courtois (142), Casemiro (143) and Karim Benzema (155).
However, Vinicius is still some way short of the 438 appearances made by Ronaldo and the 671 games Ramos played for Madrid before the pair departed for pastures new.
The 21-year-old still has another two-and-a-half years to run on his existing contract and appears happy to stay on beyond that, with talks over a new deal reportedly ongoing.
“I am lucky to have been here for three years and I want to be here for much longer,” he told El Larguero.
“I want to have a great career like Cristiano Ronaldo and Sergio Ramos did. And also like Marcelo is doing here.”
Vinicius declined the chance to join Barcelona in favour of signing for fierce rivals Real Madrid in 2017, a decision the Flamengo academy product does not regret.
“The two clubs looked for me and I decided to go to Real Madrid for the project and for what they did for me,” he said.
“I thought it was the best project for me and it was the club with which I had the most affinity.
“I always loved Real Madrid I always loved Cristiano Ronaldo and all the players. I chose well and I want to stay here for a long time.”
Vinicius has enjoyed a fine start to the 2021-22 campaign with 10 goals and five assists in all competitions for Madrid.
Benzema is one of only seven players in Europe’s top five leagues to have been directly involved in more goals this term, the prolific striker having scored 14 and set up eight.
The pair have built up a good connection at Madrid and Vinicius believes his team-mate’s form across 2021 should see him crowned as the world’s best player next month.
“Karim is a great player, I love playing with him,” Vinicius said. “He always helps me. I want to continue playing with him to have a great season.
“Now we are playing a lot more time together. We already know what the other one is going to do. I hope he wins the Ballon d’Or.”