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all set for Racing & other news

March 5, 2011

Let’s hope we continue scoring goals at the same pace, even without Cristiano!

Is someone going to help Antonio put his gloves on?

ONE. The number of healthy players has suddenly decreased to 16!  We all know that Khedira and Pipa were already injured, that Cris hurt himself vs. Málaga and Gago in yesterday’s training session, but now Eze Garay, Kaká and Álvaro Arbeloa have been added to the list!  Lass didn’t train, and is suspended for the upcoming game.  The good news is that Pepe has recovered from the flu.

As for the injuries: Kaká has a knee injury, Arbeloa has low back pains (Mou said he can barely walk) and Garay has pains in his right adductor.

TWO. More on Kaká: according to Marca, the player is not pleased with his physical condition, and so he and Mourinho agreed to have him follow a specific training plan to get back into game shape, meaning that he won’t play or even travel with the team until he’s satisfied with his form.  On Friday, he didn’t train with his teammates, and instead worked out in the gym.

It’s MFC and The Boss!  Watch out for Xabi almost tilting over but turning it into a deliberate move in the training video here.

THREE. That meant that only 16 first teamers trained at today’s session, with the absences filled by three canteranos: Jorge Casado, Álex Fernández and MFC Álvaro Borja Morata Martín.  All 19 of these players were called up for tomorrow’s game against Racing (21h) at El Sardinero.  Due to the reduced number of healthy players, no one was not included as per coach’s decision.

Goalkeepers: Iker, Adán, Dudek.

Defenders: Marcelo, Albiol, Pepe, Carvalho, Ramos, Casado.

Midfielders: Canales, Granero, Xabi Alonso, Özil, Di María, Pedro León, Álex.

Forwards: Benzema, Adebayor, Morata.

FOUR. In his press conference, José Mourinho talked about his injured players: “you can injury yourself in any moment.  Gago injured himself yesterday playing against RMC, Arbeloa has a problem with his back; you can say he injured himself at home because it wasn’t while training or playing.  Cristiano injured himself playing and scoring.  Kaká told me that he has a pain that limits his movements and that he’s not happy when he’s not in top shape.  Between him and the doctors, they’ve decided that the best thing will be for him to return when he himself is convinced that he’s good.  I prefer it like this, because a player loses self esteem when he doesn’t feel that he’s at his best.”

To describe Cristiano’s absence, Mou went back to his favorite word as of late: “he’s fairly important for the club.  That’s obvious.  We’re not going to be hypocritical.  But we have other motivated players and our objectives won’t change.”

Mou also spoke out harshly against Diego Torres from El País, questioning the validity of the information he used for his articles.

FIVE. Speaking of yesterday’s training session, Real Madrid C played a mini-game against some of the substitutes from the Málaga game (Dudek, Arbeloa, Gago, Pedro Leon, Granero, Adebayor, Canales, plus some “loans” from the filial, with Adán going the other way to defend RMC’s goal), and they beat the first teamers 1-0 behind a goal from Fran Sol.  It was during this game that Gago was injured.

SIX. Good news for me, because it looks the club will renew the contract of MFC Álvaro Borja Morata Martín, linking him to the club until 2015.  ABMM’s agent, along with his father Alfonso, met with JV and José Ángel Sánchez yesterday at the Bernabéu, and the contract will probably be finalized next week.  This comes on the heels of Jesé’s contract renewal, which is great news because it shows the importance that the club is placing on some of its brightest canteranos.

SEVEN. According to Cadena SER, last Friday a member of Madrid’s security staff was injured at A Coruña’s airport, while he was protecting José Mourinho.  The team had arrived at Alvedro around 20h on Feb. 25, and the team, including its coach, was signing autographs for the fans.  While Mou was attending to the fans, one of the security guards tasked with protecting him felt a pinch on his chest.  He didn’t think anything of it then, but when he got on the bus later, he realized that he had a four centimeter long wound near his armpit, which could have been caused by a steel knife.  The club’s doctor treated him and they decided not to tell anyone of this incident, not even José Mourinho, who had apparently been the target.  Mou was only told about this on Thursday.

However, Cadena COPE’s version of the event is slightly different.  According to COPE, the security guard had discovered a scratch on his back upon arriving at the team hotel, which could have been caused “by a notebook, a pen or any other object.”  In addition, no one had reported the incident, not the national police, not the Guardia Civil or the local police.

Mou said today at his press conference that “two days ago they told me that one of the security guards had something on his back, and I don’t know anything more than that.  I didn’t see anything happen.”  He added that he doesn’t fear anything.

EIGHT. Raúl, in an interview with TVE, revealed that his dream was to “retire in Real Madrid, but there was a moment in which circumstances changed.”  He went on to say that “it was difficult to leave so many people, so many friends behind, but I’m still a madridista and I still keep up with what’s happening.  Hopefully they’ll be able to win all the titles this year.”  He added that he’s still in contact with many of his former teammates and club employees.

Go watch the video, because there’s a lot of great vintage footage, and close-ups of Rulo’s face!

NINE. And mark March 11 on your calendars, because that’s the day that Torrente 4: Lethal Crisis premieres, and of course there are several Madrid players – Álvaro Arbeloa, Sergio Ramos and Gonzalo Higuaín – in the movie!  According to Santiago Segura (the star of the movie who plays the title character), Álvaro comes off as very handsome in the movie, while Pipita not so much.

Speaking of tweets, a couple of Álvaro’s tweets from yesterday: he said he’ll take Xabi and Esteban with him to go watch Pancho Varona (a musician) and then tweeted a picture of himself with a lot of makeup on (he also called his performance in Torrente “brilliant”).

TEN. Karim Benzema told AS that he looked towards the stands after scoring one of his goals on Thursday because “my father and some other family members had come to Madrid to see me, and I wanted to pay tribute to them from the field.”  Given that Karim also scored when his dad came to watch him play in Lyon, can I ask that Mr. Benzema be present at all games that Karim plays in until the end of the season?

ELEVEN. Iker, in a commercial for Reebok’s Zigtech shoes.

Players will no longer be able to wear neck mufflers starting July 1, after the IFAB banned them.

TWELVE. Radio show “El Larguero” chatted with former Madrid player and canterano Óscar Miñambres (he last played for Madrid in 2004), and it showed how difficult life can be for a footballer.  Óscar retired at the age of 26 after suffering a series of knee injuries, and now oversees an estanco (a little shop selling things like tobacco, stamps, metro passes) in Móstoles.  He told the program that the last time he was at the Bernabéu was during the Capello era, and even now he can’t watch much football because he feels a bit bitter towards the sport, for how everything worked out for him.  Óscar also said that the club had promised to make him and his brother season-ticket holding members, but that they’re still waiting for their cards.

He was also critical of the “Zidanes y Pavones” policy, as the club demanded that the Pavones be Zidanes, which wasn’t realistic, and advised the club to focus on their “Pavones.”  They played a clip of VDB talking about Óscar (he started out as a kid with us, progressed, and had great qualities and was a great player.  I send him a hug and wish him the best in life and for his business) and Óscar said of the marquis, “he was the one that promoted me to the first team, and I’m very thankful to him.  He treated everyone well and I loved working for him.  He’s a gentleman from head to toe and always will be.”

When asked if he stays in contact with any of his former teammates, Óscar said for the most part no, but that he occasionally sees Iker and his parents around Boadilla.  And when asked if he’s happy now, he says yes, because he has a wonderful wife and kids, and he hopes that in the future he will be able to watch football again.  I hope so too, and wish him the best of luck in the future.

Have a listen here.

26 Comments leave one →
  1. IsaBella permalink
    March 5, 2011 16:33

    ayyy poor Alvaro 😦 I hope he gets better soon.
    I feel scared only to think about someone trying to harm Mou. Let’s just hope this story is not a big deal.
    On March 11th I’m still in Madrid so maybe I’ll get to see the movie, I’ll try at least 🙂
    So Iker is going to be contracted by Reebok now? nice change with all the Nike around Madrid 😉

    • March 5, 2011 16:36

      Iker’s been with Reebok for the last 10 years or so.

      • IsaBella permalink
        March 5, 2011 16:59

        ops…. what a shame… I’m sorry Una, no estoy al corriente 😦

  2. mumblo permalink
    March 5, 2011 17:07

    I miss Sergio’s short fluffy hair. Thank you for the little memento.

  3. amouria permalink
    March 5, 2011 17:29

    can I ask that Mr. Benzema be present at all games that Karim plays in until the end of the season?
    WE ALL REQUEST THE SAME. Such a legitimate and lovely request.

  4. Ros permalink
    March 5, 2011 17:38

    Yay, Raul! Thank you for the link with (his lovely eyes and) good memories.

  5. bbBenz permalink
    March 5, 2011 17:55

    una have you seen this video? so many interesting things going on inside there! including Iker and Sergio speaking English 😀

    • colon permalink
      March 8, 2011 08:27

      highlights of this video:
      1. iker introducing pedro leon: “peter lion….pedro leon” haha
      2. cris introducing marcelo as “the best player in the league”
      3. sergio’s “nice” “yes”

  6. Whiskey permalink
    March 5, 2011 18:06

    Ah how nice to wake up on a dreary Saturday morning (in my world anyhow) to that Raul interview – thanks so much Una! I will never get entirely used to seeing him in another kit, but glad to see him doing well at Schalke. And he, like Zidane, doesn’t seem to age at all – he just gets better looking 🙂

    We do seem to have a lot of players in the sick bay right now – get well soon guys – and good luck against Racing.

  7. ChristinaLFP permalink
    March 5, 2011 18:08

    awww!!!! karim he is such a big cutie, he melts my heart everytime he talks ( when he said he called his parents cos he wasnt starting against lyon and how he pointed cos his family was there) Daddy Benzema should be at every game

  8. March 5, 2011 18:48

    If i’m not mistaken, this is the second time Gago has been injured playing a team from our cantera in practice…when he just got back from his sprained knee last year, i think it was carvajal who re-sprained that same knee…i think gago should be banned from now on from playing against the youth teams!

  9. Maisoun permalink
    March 5, 2011 19:06

    Am I the only one that thought “Go Carlota!” after hearing Arbeloa was injured AT HOME? lol I hope he gets better soon!

    • HermosaChica permalink
      March 6, 2011 14:56

      LOL! That always pops in my head first when I hear it’s a “home” injury! But then I have to force myself into assuming that he lifted some heavy box or something along the lines..
      Lefty, I’m glad you shared my shameful thoughts for me. 😉

    • Pammie permalink
      March 7, 2011 13:31

      yeah me too… or he was tripped by his army of pugs 😛

  10. eruhin permalink
    March 5, 2011 19:07

    LOVE the tummy flash when Iker stops the ball in the commercial! No stupid underarmor for once! 😀

  11. juliefromparis permalink
    March 5, 2011 19:11

    Oh my god.. Granero likes bon iver’s songs. Do you thk its possible to develop a crush on a player because he tweeted about your favorite singer??? 😉 q

  12. Sara permalink
    March 5, 2011 19:29

    That Álvaro pic is frightening!
    Poor Óscar, I remember him and I wish him all the best in life. I hope he can watch football happily again and RM should make him a season tickets member asap! These things make me sad. As much as I love the Zidanes, the Pavones should always be treated well by the club because they give their all and truly understand what it means to defend RM.

  13. March 5, 2011 19:41

    That injury list had me crying. OOOOooonoooesss!

  14. Ana permalink
    March 5, 2011 20:13

    Just wondering, what did Mourinho say against Diego Torres? I have heard that he doesn’t like Mou very much.

  15. Michelle permalink
    March 5, 2011 23:12

    Ooof, sad story about Óscar Miñambres. For every player that makes it, there are 20 who were descartado along the way…

  16. nicole permalink
    March 6, 2011 00:53

    what is zidane y Pavones –

    hahah i love that photo of arbeloa

  17. March 6, 2011 02:45

    when raul said that he hopes real madrid win all the titles this year, does that mean he would rather have real madrid win the champions league than schalke?

  18. Beanie permalink
    March 6, 2011 04:21

    Is there any reason why the IFAB banned neck mufflers?

    • Pammie permalink
      March 7, 2011 13:33

      They are afraid that another player’s arm/hand will get stuck on the muffler, causing injury and strangulation. I never heard of such an incident, but jewellery is banned for the same reason so…

  19. March 6, 2011 16:02

    Raul!! Every time you managed to squeeze some Raul goodness in your post, I squealed in delight. He’s the love of my life!

  20. Ang permalink
    March 7, 2011 23:41

    wow… I’m catching up with the posts and … all I knew about Alvaro was when Mou said he got injured at home …and you adding that it’s his back & he can barely walk… makes me wonder…
    WHAT WAS HE DOING AT HOME THAT HE HURT HIS BACK??? Are they working on baby #2???? *lol* … Hopefully it’s nothing to serious!!! 🙂

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