Diarra back to his best for Real Madrid

“In all honesty, I believe that I am already playing at the same level as I was at Lyon,” he said to Spanish daily AS.

“I wanted to show everyone that I could replicate my form and now I feel that I am finally at that level, although I am not satisfied with it. I want to continue to improve even more.

“Ever since I arrived, a lot of people doubted me and I know I had a lot of critics, but I was sure that I would reach my best form eventually.”

Diarra joined Real Madrid from Lyon in 2006 for €26million.

He added on the derby against Atletico Madrid next weekend: “I have played three times against them… we won once and the other two ended in a draw.

“Atlético will be very fired up especially after their defeat at Barça but we are going to the Calderón to win. We are going to play at our best and I think it will be a great game.”