the news round-up
I have a question for you all: what do you think of these posts with just bits and pieces of news? There’s always a lot of stuff that I want to cover, but can’t/don’t want to write separate posts for, so I just lump them all together in one post. Is that okay with you, or would you prefer another format?
ONE. Pep Guardiola is the latest person to say that the Liga is not finished yet: “a four-point advantage is not sufficient and the Liga is not yet decided. If we play the second half like we played the first half, four points are a lot and seven even more, but no one can promise me that we’re going to have a second half equal to the first one. With Madrid, you only truly beat them when you become the champion, when it’s mathematically decided. If there’s a team with nine lives, it’s Madrid.“ That’s why I love Pep.
TWO. Esteban Granero talked with RMTV earlier this week, although who could pay attention to the words coming out of his mouth, when he was looking this good?
El Pirata says he’s more mature this year as a footballer and a person, and that he’s feeling much more centered and confident. As for Mourinho, Esteban says that he knows what to do to get the best out of each footballer, and that the majority of the things said about him by those who don’t know him have no basis. He added that Mou is honest, straightforward and doesn’t play games, which he likes, so the only thing he can do is work hard to convince him that he deserves a starting spot.
I loved his quote about Kaká’s return: “he’s happy and we are as well, seeing him like that.”
THREE. An El País article on the return of Kaká details what went on in the tunnel before the Almería game: “Casillas was silent. Behind him, Sergio Ramos was greeting teammates and rivals: Alonso, Albiol, Uche, Carlos García, M’Bami, Khedira, Arbeloa… The two lines went forward towards the light and then Kaká appeared. He smiled as he walked, and Marcelo pushed him to keep going. But then Kaká stopped; he had forgotten something. Marcelo went on towards the field. Di María and Özil also passed by Kaká and he stared back towards the locker room. He didn’t move until he saw the head of his inseparable friend appear, the only one that defended him without making fun of him, when all of his colleagues had accused him of giving up, one year ago. Kaká didn’t move until Cristiano came up to him and patted him on the butt. Kaká was going to start a game for the first time since March of last year.”
I love it.
FOUR. One of Mou’s used notebooks is up for sale, for €2,500. It corresponds to his last game with Oporto, in May 2004.
After the game, the coach gave the notebook to an old friend from the Coaches Association of Oporto, and even wrote a personal dedication to him on the cover of it. The son of the friend is now putting the notebook up for sale. Inside, there are Mou’s annotations, notes and tactical drawings.
It’s good to see that he hasn’t changed. But one question: how come his Real Madrid notebooks aren’t personalized with his name? Since his training shirts are, don’t you think the
sticks of gum notebooks would be the next step?
More on Mou: watch some videos of his deLaCour “City Ego Collection” watches here. The schematics of the watches look a bit like Mou’s drawings in his football notebooks, no? We also get a glimpse of the making off video for the ads, shot in Madrid. And I love that the backs of the watches have Mou’s autograph and a phrase inscribed:
I am not afraid of the consequences of my decisions.
What a great quote! Not so great: the photoshopping in the ads.
Mou spoke to Marca in Geneva yesterday, and they described him like this: “the other José Mourinho is shy, talks softly, smiles and likes to walk around tranquilly, with a thoughtful look on his face.” He told the newspaper that “I don’t have much of a life outside of football. When I have free time, I prefer to spend it at home with my family. You will hardly ever find me in Madrid and not at home. My daily life is simple: I go from home to work, to the cole and then back home again.” As for friendships, Mou revealed, “Obviously, my closest friends are the people who work with me, my assistants that have been with me for many years and with whom I form a ‘microfamily.’ I only disconnect from football when it’s time for vacation. Football has given me a lot, but it’s also deprived me of being able to spend time with my family on the beach, at the movies… but I know I can’t have everything in life.”
He’s lovely, no?
FIVE. Mou will have to compete for the hearts of consumers with Zinedine Zidane, who was also in Geneva yesterday, at rival watchmaker IWC’s party, with wife Veronique, and looking great. I’d buy anything he’s selling, whether it’s the watch, the Vespa, the road sign, the wallpaper, the red carpet, his wife’s purse, the suit, anything!
SIX. Today sees Xabi Alonso heading to Donostia to pick up his Tambor de Oro award from the city government in recognition of his contributions towards making the city more attractive (which Xabi does just by his existence, no? It takes absolutely no effort on his part) and developing its ties with other cities, persons and organizations. Alfredo di Stéfano was honored with the drum in 1997.