(Reuters) – James Rodriguez has rowed back on comments that raised speculation about his future at Real Madrid by stating his desire to stay at the European champions.
The Colombia international, whose role at Real has diminished in the last two seasons since his 80-million-euros ($83.53 million) move from Monaco in 2014, scored twice in a 3-0 win over Sevilla in the King’s Cup last 16 on Wednesday.
The playmaker has made just four league starts this campaign and in December stated he would consider his options if he did not get more playing time.
“Everyone in the team wants to play all the time and we all go through bad moments but now a new year has begun for me and I’m staying, I’m staying at Madrid,” Rodriguez told reporters.
The 25-year-old opened the scoring against Sevilla in the 11th minute with a low curling effort from the edge of the area and hit the third from the penalty spot.
“I just want to play well when I have the chance and be able to do good things like I did today and help the team by scoring goals,” he added.
Rodriguez angered club officials and team mates after Real won the FIFA Club World Cup in Japan by saying: “I can’t guarantee if I’m going to stay here. I’ve had offers and I have seven days to think about it. I’m happy at Real Madrid but I want to play more.”
Real coach Zinedine Zidane was impressed with the Colombian’s display against Sevilla but did not single him out for praise.
He said: “James had a good game, he worked hard and scored two goals. He was important, just like everyone else.”
(Reporting by Richard Martin)