How Real Madrid star James Rodriguez has helped Brighton's Steven Alzate settle into life with Colombia
Brighton and Hove Albion midfielder Steven Alzate said he received a warm welcome from his new teammates as he settles in life as an international footballer with Colombia.
Alzate, 20, was called-up to the senior set-up by Colombia boss Carlos Queiroz for their upcoming friendlies against Peru and Ecuador, to be held in the USA on Saturday and Wednesday.
The Albion midfielder has impressed so far in his breakthrough season in the Premier League, having made his debut at Newcastle in September.
He will now test his skills alongside Colombia's top players such as James Rodríguez, Juan Cuadrado and Jefferson Lerma.
“Everyone welcomed me really well," said Alzate. “I’ve spoken to all of them and they have made me feel at home. I’ve spoken to James, Cuadrado, Lerma, Jeison Murillo and it has been a pleasure.
“I need to go slowly. It’s the first time I have been called and I need to get used to the level. I want to play in midfield but, with Brighton, I have played left-back, right back so wherever they put me I will help the team.”
“We’ve not done much work on Peru. We are thinking about ourselves. We have been playing well but we need to start scoring goals, which is the most important thing.”
Queiroz is looking forward to working with Alzate and is excited to see what he can add to his squad.
“I’m very excited about Alzate," said the former Manchester United assistant manager. "Because he is playing very well and, as a midfielder, he has the characteristics which suit the needs of this team.”