Edgaras Jankauskas (Vilnius, Lithuania, 1995) has spent a few days in Donostia 19 years after his departure from Real in which he played 57 games scoring 19 goals between 2000 and 2002. The Lithuanian forward, who left a great memory and reached Winning the Europa League and the Champions League with Oporto de Mourinho (2003 and 2004), he is trying to find a place now as a coach while enjoying life, the gastronomy he adores and the many friends he left in the many cities in the ones that this soccer globetrotter developed his long career.
How long has it been since you returned to Donostia?
More than 19 years.
Have you come back for tourism or work reasons?
For pleasure. I always dreamed of going back. He always missed Donostia. Two years ago I was about to go but something always happened that prevented it. Now I was in Barcelona, I took the train and left. The only regret I have is that I have not been able to watch games or training because of the covid. In any case, I am very happy because I keep my friends as always in Donostia. It has been a very exciting visit.
I am a fan of Basque food; I’ve been to Barkaiztegi, too bad we couldn’t drink cider from the kupela
There aren’t many people left at the club from his time. Who has he been with?
I have been with Josu Busto, the physiotherapist, and he has treated me very well. As always. I watched the Real game in Valencia at his home. It makes me sad that I couldn’t be with Dr. Escobar, but three days go by quickly. I wanted to go to Hondarribia, do many things. Above all I am happy because although 20 years have passed, I see that my friends are physically and emotionally well.
The one who has not physically changed is you. It is made a brush …
It is not that I take care of myself much but I do not like to live badly. I do not diet but I like to move, do sports, sleep well … I was never a guy to walk at night, smoke or drink. It is a lifestyle.
There is no need for anyone to explain to me what
meaning for the Real to win the Cup
What have you done these days in Donostia?
I have been to Hondarribia but above all I like to eat. I am a fan of Basque food and everywhere I am, I look for a tavern or a cider house. I have that nostalgia for my time at La Real. I spent the winter between Malaga and Barcelona, because winter is very hard in Lithuania, and in Malaga I found the Iñaki steakhouse that had some marvelous chops. On Saturday I was eating at the Barkaiztegi cider house. Too bad because of the covid we couldn’t drink kupela cider.
On Sunday I went out for a run and walked around the stadium, which is wonderful, and then I played paddle tennis with my friend Iñigo, who is 60 years old and moves better than me. In the afternoon I watched the Real game at Josu’s house.
What did you think of the Real?
The only time I played at Mestalla we lost 4-0. Things have changed a lot. La Real plays like Real Madrid. I have the feeling that now most teams are afraid of Real. It is a solid team, a Champions team. The image he gave was very good and, also with a very young team, with many homegrown players.
La Real transmits that they are a very brave, brave team, they are not afraid even if they play against Barcelona or Madrid.
Do you like a specific player?
No, the collective image. La Real transmits that they are a very brave, brave team, they are not afraid even if they play against Barcelona or Madrid. And it also seems to me that he has a lot of future since he is very young, with homegrown players, with an average age of 22-23 years, with a magnificent stadium, perfect training conditions …
Do you have the feeling that Real has made a leap in quality compared to when you played?
I’m not saying that we didn’t have good training conditions but it has improved. In fact, when I went to other clubs I realized that there I had everything to be happy. Living in that city, small and without distances but with all the facilities, training in those conditions … I was always envious of La Real.
When I went to other clubs I realized that in San Sebastián I had everything to be happy
Did you see the Cup final?
Sure. There is no need for anyone to explain to me what it means for the people of the city, for Gipuzkoa, to have won the Cup. I know what Real means among its people and how it behaves before those big matches in which a week before they only talk about the final.
And more against Athletic …
That’s. I remember very well a match in San Mamés, on the penultimate matchday, the one in which I scored a very nice goal with my left from outside the area. Javi de Pedro scored another free-kick, we won 1-3 and we were saved.
Back then they were fighting to avoid relegation and now Real is Cup champion and fighting to enter the Europa League. Would you like to play in this Real?
Of course. It is obvious that fighting to avoid relegation has nothing to do with being in the fight for the Champions or the Europa League.
Where does your professional future go?
Linked to football. I think I have the ability and ability to train.
In a hurry to find a bench?
I’m not in a hurry, I have no need, although many of us who have played are soccer sick. You want to be on the field, if a ball comes to you, kick it… I lack those nerves, that anxiety before the games, I miss it.
I don’t know who will win the League, the important thing is that Real enters Europe
As a football fan, who do you think is going to win the Champions League and the League?
I don’t think about it much. There are great teams. Maybe PSG or Bayern Munich, which is not dead. And the League is also very open. The most important thing is for Real to enter the Europa League or the Champions League.
And don’t let another 20 years pass until I return to Donostia
That’s for sure. I promise I’ll be back much sooner.
We will wait for you with open arms.