Serene and focused on what he wants, also sure where he is going. That’s how it is Kevin Leonardo Mier Roblesthe Atlético Nacional goalkeeper who at 22 is ready to play the final against Tolima.
With 30 games for the green, Kevin is aware that he has grown and learned a lot, but that he must continue on that path. He never sets a ceiling.
He is grateful for the affection and support that purslane fans have shown them throughout the country, where, as he says, they have never felt like visitors.
Three days before the first duel for the title, the goalkeeper, whose direct references are Milton Patiño y Rene Higuitaspoke with EL COLOMBIANO about what he is experiencing and dreams of.
How are you experiencing the moments before the final against Tolima?
“Very happy for everything we are experiencing. We deserve everything that is happening to us and now, at the gates of playing a grand final, what we want is to enjoy it to the fullest”.
How is the team inside for this instance?
“Happy, the expectations are the best, we are all 100%, committed to what we are going to play for, which is the title, something longed for. We want number 17 for our institution, for our great club”.
What does a final against Tolima represent for you?
“It is always a rival that competes with us, that leaves nothing to chance, that plays it all. We are also preparing to compete to the maximum because it is a yearning we have, because the club has not celebrated a title in the League for several years and we are convinced of achieving it”.
Does it have any meaning to start at home and finish in Ibagué?
“I think that the ideal is to become strong at home, what is up to us is always to look for a good result with our people, with a fan that is always with us. We have also been good visitors, so we are preparing very well for those two games”.
You had to take over at a difficult time, you won the title and now you play your first final, what do you think of this?
“I consider myself very calm, serene and I recover quickly in the face of adversity, it is a strength that I have and one of the greatest virtues that has helped me to achieve what I have done so far.”
How have you formed that character?
“I have not changed anything, since I was little I have always brought that, in the face of any obstacle I always recover, I did not let myself down for anything, I get up quickly, that has been a great virtue and it has served me a lot now in my performance”.
How do you think the first match at Atanasio will be?
“With everything we have in our favour, I imagine achieving an excellent result, with the support of all our fans who have been important in pushing us at all times. I think it will be something in favor for us”.
Do you have any cabal or ritual before a match?
“No, none, obviously I visualize the good things that are going to happen in the game, I think about the balls that I am going to save, the bailing, the coverage, the aerial game, the shots, the passes and all that”.
Until now, what has been the most special match with Nacional?
“The last one against Junior was very nice because of everything that the fans gave us and made us rise in adversity when we were losing, I think that is something very good that we have and that helps us to be in this stage”.
What do you remember about the duel against Junior, which was the most difficult ball?
“I think that the most complicated thing is always the aerial game, which is a fight to the death. They were not going to be removed in any divided play, so you had to be with the knife between your teeth and be very fine”.
How do you prepare day by day for that high level?
“What I work with the goalkeeper coaches is something that strengthens us every day, because we work on many real game actions, things that can be experienced in games and of course, we analyze the rivals, their forwards, to find out what those are. strengths that they have and thus be well prepared to then do it in the best way in the game”.
After your performance was the best in the game, did you receive any calls or messages that surprised you?
“The messages of support and encouragement are always there and I take them in moderation, with my feet on the ground and a calm head.”
What do you dream about?
“Living my present, I appreciate everything I am living. Then I will think and analyze what can come later”.
What is the advice that always applies?
“Persistence and resilience, being brave, because they are virtues that I have had since I was little.”
What does Hernán Darío Herrera mean in your career?
“It is the confidence that he has given us, it is valuable to me. I only have words of gratitude for him for everything he has given me, for playing, having that support means a lot to me”.
What is the image you want to form as a goalkeeper?
“Let them remember that I am a goalkeeper with a good foot, that I contribute a lot and, above all, when I go out to the team, that is a characteristic that must be had because more football is played”.
What do you think of the goalkeepers that are showing up in the League?
“It is to establish ourselves, that they know that in Colombia we have talent, good goalkeepers. Colleagues show very good performance, they show it in every game, so what we want is for them to pay more attention to us and continue giving us more opportunities to show what we can do”.
What does Kevin do when he’s not thinking about football?
“Share with my family, with my friends and be at home.”
What friends has football left you?
“Nicolás Hernández, Andrés Reyes, players who have passed through Nacional. Also some of the Colombian National Team with whom I had a wonderful time. I am very grateful for everything we share and what I was able to learn from them for my growth.”
Who is that person who pulls your ears?
“René is always there and at any time with everything he’s experienced, he tries to give me more, I always listen to him and to teacher Milton and those from lower divisions who come to advise me.”
What do you think of being an example despite being so young?
“I want to set an example of persistence, that they see that despite the fact that I am young and with little experience, I always make an effort, that they fight for their dreams, that they never let themselves be defeated, God is fair and puts you in the place you deserve” .
Who are next to Kevin?
“Thank all the goalkeeper trainers from minor divisions who have always accompanied us since they are in Nacional, they give us advice and we are always there waiting to do what they tell us, apply it. The closest ones are the teacher Milton Patiño, René Higuita, who are always there on a daily basis to talk to us and contribute to our growth”.
What do you say to the fans of Nacional?
“It is to thank them for all the support they have given us. In the face of any adversity they have always supported us and have been key to being here. Let them be calm because we all believe and we are going to fight to fulfill the dream of the 17”.
Besides the Colombian national team, what does Kevin dream of?
“Obviously winning the 17th. I’m with my feet on the ground, things are coming at the right time, and the path is opening little by little to get abroad, I like Spain, England, Italy, Germany, the best” .