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mucha suerte, Mahamadou

January 29, 2011
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Mahamadou Diarra was officially presented as a Monaco player yesterday.  I wish him the best of luck there!  He was never a fan favorite, because he wasn’t the flashiest player and because he didn’t get much playing time in the last several seasons, but he was valuable to the team in his own right, and mostly behind the scenes.

It’s curious that we’re playing Osasuna at the Reyno de Navarra this weekend, because it was precisely against that team and at that stadium that Diarra probably made his biggest impact as a Real Madrid player.  It was May 4, 2008, jornada 35.  If Madrid won this game, they would win their 31st Liga.  Things didn’t go exactly Madrid’s way during the second half, as Cannavaro got himself expelled and Osasuna scored.  But then Madrid scored twice in three minutes, first Robben and then Higuaín.  Pipita’s goal came in the 43rd minute, and was started by Mahamadou Diarra.  Madrid won the game, and the week after that, Barcelona had to form the pasillo for Madrid in the Bernabéu to honor them as the champions of the 2007-08 season.  What a great moment that was, no?

In the one of the celebrations of this title, at Buddha del Mar, while Diarra danced, the players chanted, “Diarra stays, Diarra can’t be sold” in response to the rumors that he would be transferred during the summer.

Diarra also scored the winner, the second goal, a header, in the Liga-deciding match of the 2006-07 season against Mallorca, to cap off an incredible season marked by more than one heart attack inducing remontadas.  That of course led to this epic goal celebration, presided over – literally – by an ecstatic Fabio Cannavaro.  The game ended 3-1.

Mahamadou’s expected to travel back to Madrid next week to pick up a few things and to say goodbye to his former teammates and coaching staff.

And to celebrate his time with us, here’s a look back at some of the best moments involving Mahamadou, as chronicled on this blog.

To start, check out these two videos.  The first one involves Diarra interviewing Pipita (video here, explanation here) and the second involves some bodily functions (video here, explanation here).

Then we have players talking about the importance of Diarra to this team:  Granero and Faubert.  I firmly believe that a player can be extremely important to a team even if he never plays.  In Madrid, Diarra and Dudek are two shining examples.  Even though they never get off the bench – and most of the time do not even make it to the bench – their support and enthusiasm for the team are unparalleled, and in that way, they are invaluable as well.  As proof, their teammates only have the best things to say about them.

Here are some more examples of Mahamadou in his role as a cheerleader:  one, two, three and four.

And then here we have Diarra involved in a love triangle with Cristiano and Kaká.  Start here, then go here and end here.

To end, Iker named his goat Diarra.  That just shows how loved he is, no?

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16 Comments leave one →
  1. IsaBella permalink
    January 29, 2011 13:33

    “In Madrid, Diarra and Dudek are two shining examples” – thanks Una 🙂
    and of course, muchisima suerte a Mahmadou.

  2. DebS permalink
    January 29, 2011 13:54

    Non-starters are also very important to their team as they are usually the ones playing “against” the starters in practice. So behind every good “starter” is a good non-starter who makes them better. 🙂

  3. Ros permalink
    January 29, 2011 15:49

    As a recent follower of Real Madrid, I had no idea how important Diarra was, but thank you for this tribute to him.

  4. Maddi permalink
    January 29, 2011 15:49

    Best of luck Mahamadou!!!
    I’m a little upset that the Real Madrid website (at least the English one) isn’t doing any sort of feature on him. I know he wasn’t the most conspicuous player, but he has been with the team for a long time and was really supportive of everyone. But all the RM website is doing is a two-sentence long “Official announcement” that doesn’t acknowledge all that he’s done for the team. 😦

  5. HermosaChica permalink
    January 29, 2011 15:55

    Is Mahamadou trying to rip Pipa’s shirt off with his teeth in the second photo?..*sigh* we could really benefit form players like that..

    Thanks for grouping together some of Mahamadou’s great moments at Real Madrid! It’s always sad to see a player go; I hope he has no resentment towards the club. Best of luck Mahamadou!!

    • IsaBella permalink
      January 29, 2011 16:31

      “Is Mahamadou trying to rip Pipa’s shirt off with his teeth in the second photo?..*sigh* we could really benefit form players like that..” – a big “like” under that 😀

  6. Lyd permalink
    January 29, 2011 16:19

    wat? in the video of pipita’s goal, heinze is bleeding from his armpits??

  7. Mani Thangadurai permalink
    January 29, 2011 16:43

    Hope all the posters have had an enjoyable New Year, as have you, Una!

    I have always liked Mahamadou Diarra as a player and felt that like ex-Barcelona striker Javier Saviola he was underused and not given enough scope for his talents to shine at Madrid…that’s what usually happens when big clubs have an embarrassment of riches in terms of talent…some of them may hardly get to play. There is no denying his talent, and the best thing is that at 29 he still has several great years ahead of him and will definitely get more chances to make the most of his talent and ability.

    As for Dudek, I won’t cause any further controversies, but sorry, you know only too well what I think of him. I simply have no respect for him as a sportsman.

  8. Ang permalink
    January 29, 2011 18:11

    Good Luck 2 him!!!!!

  9. LaBlanca permalink
    January 29, 2011 20:42

    thank you Una I love you for posting a farewell post to Mahamadou (Big Mama 😉 ) … Hes always had a big heart and was very important for the team. We will miss him! Nevertheless I wish him luck as he needs to play.

  10. Pammie permalink
    January 29, 2011 22:29

    It’s a bit sad that he went so silently. I wish him and his family all the best for the future!

  11. Kai permalink
    January 30, 2011 00:08

    Amazing! Real Madrid should give you a job. This is the best player tribute I’ve ever seen. You should think about doing this (sports journalism) for a living.

  12. nadi permalink
    January 30, 2011 01:59

    god how i miss those days 😦
    i really mis ruud van man
    i miss how confident we were, and i hope we will be back….actually im sure.
    HALA MADRIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIID

  13. January 30, 2011 06:50

    Wishing all the best to M. Diarra… he was a true team player and will be missed greatly. I hope he gets to play more at Monaco.

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