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ICYMI – the defending this “escudo” edition

May 4, 2011

In case you missed it – Barcelona vs. Real Madrid [2011-05-03, Champions League semifinals vuelta, 1-1].

All I can say is, I was happy to see much more civility in this game, and I am proud of my team.  They fought and played hard, and that’s all we can ask of them, especially if there are things we cannot control.  They have my support, and always will.

ONE.  I loved Iker’s “¡vaya cara!” gestures!  Seeing him do that twice made my day, and summed up the game perfectly.

According to AS, Iker might be investigated by UEFA for these gestures.  Once again, UEFA shows themselves to be a big bunch of “eejits” (as they would say on a favorite TV show of mine – anyone know what it is?).

TWO.  Some pre- and mid-game scenes.  The two most elegant men in the stadium making their way to the locker room, and Cris giving a little pep talk while warming up.

And before the second half started, Marcelo shook his hair to get all the water out (I love Marcelo’s hair), while Iker adjusted his gloves.  And Xabi stretching is such a mesmerizing sight!

THREE.  José Mourinho decided to watch the game from the hotel, as there was no safe spot for him in the Camp Nou – after all, if one guy can elude a dozen security personnel and get close enough to Cristiano Ronaldo to attempt to put a hat on him, what’s going to happen to Mou, who’s public enemy number one as far as the Camp Nou is concerned?  Several members of Madrid’s staff, including Silvino, Rui Faria and Chendo, were seen using iPads and mobiles, leading people to believe that they were secretly communicating with Mou.  Aitor Karanka denied that this was the case, saying, “we spoke before the game about possible hypotheses and what we were going to do, but not during the game because it wasn’t allowed.”

The team left a symbolic seat empty for Mou, and Mesut and Karim looked cute in the second row.

FOUR.  Speaking of the pitch invasion, here’s the shot of Cristiano avoiding the hat.  He received praise from the referee for remaining calm.  I love the way that Marcelo is just observing, with his arms crossed!  By the way, UEFA better open an investigation against Barcelona for this pitch invasion, just as they did against Madrid.

I wonder if this had happened to a Barcelona player at the Bernabéu, would they have fallen to the ground clutching their knee or ankle (or face, if it were Busquets)?  What we can be sure of is that if there is a foul like this one from Pedro on Lass, the Barcelona player would have fallen to the ground and not kept on running like Lass did, despite the lack of contact.

FIVE.  Random moments: Álvaro Arbeloa lifting up his shirt to dry the ball, and Iker gesturing.

SIX.  Some signs of frustration from our players, out of many during the game.

SEVEN.  Vicente del Bosque watched the game next to Zubi, while FP was so nervous he was biting the piece of paper he had in his hand.

EIGHT.  Marcelo’s goal.  Valdés’ gesture after it looks less like a sign of frustration and more like an entreaty to the referee to find some way to have this goal annulled, no?  I love the way Marcelo’s hair bounced as he ran in slow motion!

Side note: I also liked how Barcelona celebrated their goal by doing what they do best – diving.  It really was like a swimming pool out there, between the rain and Barcelona watering the field.

NINE.  More Marcelo – looking like he was at a water park, and more of his hair in slow motion.

TEN.  In the 47th minute, the referee called a foul on Cristiano Ronaldo, thus negating the goal that Gonzalo Higuaín had just scored, saying that Cristiano had fouled Mascherano.  What he seemingly neglected to account for was Piqué pushing Cristiano into Mascherano.  After that happened, Mascherano first touched his knee, then decided his ankle would be a better injury spot, so his hands moved down.  He then rolled around on the ground several times for effect.  Of note: he rolled right on top of the supposedly injured ankle he was clutching.  He would repeat this exact same move at another point in the game, only this time, he would pause mid-roll to see if the call was going to go his way, or if he needed to do some more acting.

So, the lesson at the Barcelona school of diving (Cris insinuated this exists) must go like this: roll at least twice, clutch knee/ankle/face, gesture and grimace in pain until the referee is convinced and makes a call in your favor.

ELEVEN.  After the game, Sandro Rosell said, “tonight, football and the values of Barça have triumphed” (I see he and Xavi have the same speechwriter).  He added, “the culé fan has set an example for good behavior.  Our socios behaved civilly, and were very responsible.”  So Mr. Rosell, would those examples of good, civil and responsible behavior include:

(1) Throwing an extra ball on the field to disrupt Madrid’s play when they were in Barcelona’s half of the field, right after they stole the ball from Barcelona?  (2) Throwing hard objects on the pitch?  The referee made Dani Alves pick it up.  (3) the Camp Nou crowd making racist monkey noises at both Manu Adebayor and Marcelo during the second half, after they got tangled up with Busquets and Messi, respectively?  (4) The pitch invasion?  And would an example of “the values of Barça” be licking your lips as you watch your captain cavort topless around the field?

Rosell went on to say, “our players were marvelous, they were the great actors of the night (han sido los grandes actores de la noche).”  A Freudian slip, no doubt.

TWELVE.  More post-game declarations.

Iker said that Mourinho sent them a message congratulating them for the game they played, and that “there were certain things that I didn’t like about the Barcelona players, some comments that they made.”  As to Higuaín’s annulled goal, our captain said, “what else do you want me to say.  One more time, it’s the same thing as always.  But whatever any Real Madrid player says will be used against them in the future.  No one likes to be eliminated like this.  They shouldn’t receive so much help from the referees.  We’re hurt and angry.  The referees killed us.  They robbed us here and there.  We’re not in the final because of them.”

Meanwhile, Xabi said, “we’re very disappointed with these decisions.”  In allusion to comments made by Xavi about Real Madrid’s style, he said, “I don’t criticize the football of any teammates.”  And Cristiano added, “it was Mission Impossible IV.  We knew something was going to happen.  Higuaín’s goal was legal yet they didn’t allow it.  We knew that if we scored, they were going to do everything to make sure we wouldn’t advance.  That’s not good for football.  It will be better next season if they just give Barcelona the cup directly… Mascherano wasn’t like this in Liverpool, he would never have dived, while here, it seems like he dies each time he’s touched, like the rest of them.  Barcelona has a great team, so there’s no need for them to be helped.”  Cue Barcelona’s legal team complaining to UEFA!

And Xavi said after the game, “we won, and we showed that we’re superior.  Football justice was served.  The best team moved on to the final.”  And no, this was not cut and pasted from Xavi’s declarations after the Copa del Rey final or the first leg, even though they sound exactly the same.  So, win, loss or tie, no matter how they play, no matter how the opposition plays, no matter if there is even a game, Barcelona is always the best team, superior, etc.

Arbeloa and Xabi, showing much more class than Xavi, waited around at the end of the game to congratulate and shake hands with Barcelona’s players.  Piqué and Arbeloa hugged, as did Piqué and Xabi.  Yay!

THIRTEEN.  The Xabi Alonso pose section.™

Now I know why the referees are always making calls for the other team… they just want Xabi to come up and argue with them, because he looks so good while doing it!

Xabi ran 11.15 km during this game, the most on Madrid.  Lass was second with 10.38 km, and Ángel di María third with 10.05 km.

FOURTEEN.  The Karanka corner.

In his post-game press conference, Aitor was blunt: “once more, the míster was right.  He said that it was going to be a mission impossible, and that’s what happened.  There’s not much more to say, millions of people saw it, just like they did the last game… they annulled a legal goal, but at least they let us finish with 11 players.”  He also praised his players, saying, “madridistas should be proud of the month we’ve had.”

I for one am.

FIFTEEN.  Looking ahead and other things: Madrid’s players had today off and will resume training tomorrow to start preparing for Saturday’s game against Sevilla in the Sánchez Pizjuán.  Should Iker bring along a helmet?

And of course, go Raúl/Schalke, but failing that, go Manchester United!  ¡A por ellos!

Go here to see a short video of Ozi’s family talking about him.  His sister (who could be his twin) says that he’s very family-oriented, they talk by phone every day, and that he’s very affectionate and loves telling jokes.  His mom says they’re all very proud of him.

Tweets!  Álvaro said it was a tough day for everyone, and thanked everyone for their constant and unconditional support.  Esteban said that the team will return, and thanked the fans for being a “10.”  And Sergio congratulated his teammates for the game, and said it’s better not to talk about the referee.

Meanwhile, Xabi told us that his cousin Gorka is a geek!

And a note: please keep comments civil, free of cursing and respectful of others.

125 Comments leave one →
  1. asma permalink
    May 4, 2011 16:45

    Una, you should receive humanitarian award for your blog. It provides so much joy and happiness and comfort to us. You make us all feel so much better..such a comfort! Your blog is classy and devoid of anything negative unlike any other blog out there. I can’t describe anymore..

  2. maddy permalink
    May 4, 2011 16:47

    whats wrong with iker’s gestures? why investigation?

    • maddy permalink
      May 4, 2011 17:07

      i dont get it? UEFA doesnt investigate busquets racial slur but they want to investigate iker for nothing? were ade and marcelo taunted again?

      • Forest permalink
        May 5, 2011 04:01

        Seriously, this is unbelievable. It’s just a harmless (and cute) pat on the face. It’s not derogatory. There have definitely been worse gestures on a field that went unpunished. This cannot be true. The club and UEFA have not made any statements about this…

    • May 4, 2011 17:07

      The “¡vaya cara!” gestures mean something similar to “how shameless!”

      • maddy permalink
        May 4, 2011 17:26

        oh okay. i didnt know that.

        ‘how shameless’ – big deal (rolls eyes)

        • May 5, 2011 03:54

          thank for your explanation L 🙂
          because I also didn’t understand about “¡vaya cara!”

        • kiki permalink
          May 5, 2011 05:17

          Oh, well that explains why UEFA would go after Iker. NOT!

          UEFA apparently believe expressing an individual feeling of frustration is worse than a racist attacking the very core of a persons being and attacking the validity of said person as an equal or even human by calling them a monkey. I guess that makes sense….if you are disgusting & a complete idiot.

      • Cosi permalink
        May 5, 2011 17:04

        “how shameless”, referring to the referee’s bias towards Barcelona. unfortunately i wouldn’t be surprised if uefa investigates this and prosecute Casillas. Racist remarks that challenge the human rights of a player, on the other hand, apparently are not considered uefa concerns- just remarks that challenge uefa’s integrity. Vaya cara indeed!

        Heard that Fergie’s been calling Mou up for help regarding the final against Barcelona and that he and Mou talk to one another quite a bit. SAF consulting Mou? Love it! Come ON United, a por ellos!!!

        Thanks, Una- perfect title for this post. If you wear the the escudo, you wear it hasta el final!

  3. Sara permalink
    May 4, 2011 16:53

    IS IT SUPERNATURAL? (The TV show I mean.) If not it should be because it’s amaysing.

    • May 4, 2011 16:55

      No, it’s not.

    • Sara permalink
      May 4, 2011 17:04

      Also, now that I finished reading the whole post – thanks once again Una. You do amazing work. You managed to say everything we were all thinking but still keep it classy and level-headed, and that’s what I love about you!

      Now that the tormenta de clásicos is over you have un poquillo de descanso 🙂

    • Elizabeth permalink
      May 4, 2011 17:32

      Crap I was going to guess that too!!

  4. Chloe permalink
    May 4, 2011 16:54

    Shall limit the cursing but never showing any respect to Xavi or Busquets.
    Next season. I can’t wait.

    • May 5, 2011 07:17

      I’m with you, girl! Although I don’t think I can ever not show respect to Xavi.

  5. May 4, 2011 16:56

    I am so proud of my team, my players, and my club. I love them so, so much!

    Busquets on the field mocked everything that the anti racism campaigns stood for. It was pathetic that Marcelo had to even shake hands with him.

    I have also lost all respect for Barca and Pep for how they conducted themselves.


  6. chico permalink
    May 4, 2011 17:08

    FP isnt going to fire mourinho right? he is the best coach for our team and the players love him and fight for him like i never seen before. mourinho has already won us the copa del rey and is building a monster where his teams are usually the best their 2nd year.

    • mila_casillas permalink
      May 4, 2011 17:26

      Perez is a big Mourinho fanboy. I really doubt he would fire him. 🙂

  7. manie permalink
    May 4, 2011 17:09

    Rosell went on to say, “our players were marvelous, they were the great actors of the night (han sido los grandes actores de la noche).” A Freudian slip, no doubt.

    — I literally almost spat out my coffee, this was too funny.

    Thanks for the recap. I’m happy with the way our team played and represented the shirt. It’s too bad that refereeing decisions determined the outcome. Thank goodness we’re done with the clasicos. One last thing, Xabi is the definition of class (as if we didn’t already know, though xavi would do well to pay attention), but I am so appreciative to have players like him and Iker defending our team.

    • manie permalink
      May 4, 2011 17:10

      Didn’t mean to make it sound like I’m appreciative of only them, I love the entire team, hala madrid!!

  8. Jess permalink
    May 4, 2011 17:21

    I am SO proud of our boys! They did amazing these past four games. “Vaya cara” is right, the Barcelona players are absolutely shameless! I can’t wait until next season.

    • maddy permalink
      May 4, 2011 17:53

      they’ve come such a long way from their stuttering start of the season, i could cry. we’re progressing. and that’s what’s most important. we didnt lose to barcelona, we lost to UEFA. i hope ferdinand shows alves, busquets, mascherano (who was disgusting last night) and villa a thing or two (

      diarra has grown on me. i hope he doesnt get the boot once sahin shows. we finally have the perfect team. no injuries (except khedira). i personally wont be too unhappy if we sold kaka. we keep carrying around his dead weight and expecting him to perform cause of his price tag. it aint gonna happen FP.

      i used to dislike cris when he was at man u, but every day i love him more now. he’s so mature and he wants madrid to win more than any other madridista out there, its scary.

      i hope di maria gets his shit together. he’s too good to resort to diving. but he is very thin so maybe he finds it hard to stay on his feet when tackled.

  9. May 4, 2011 17:23

    After these days, maybe a month, even I am feeling tired. I can’t imagine how the RM players can stand all the injustice. However, it’s a good thing that all of that has already finished, at least for this season. I hope they can cheer up and improve everything during summer.

    By the way, I can hardly understand Iker’s gesture in the beginning 2 gifs. What does that mean? Ironic to Barca?

    • May 4, 2011 19:05

      His gestures were not directed at Barcelona but at the refs.
      It means ‘ vaya cara’ which is how shameless of you/ you have lots of face. He was expressing how the refs continuously prejudiced us and believed every dive of Barcelona’s players.

      • May 5, 2011 10:54

        Thank you for answering. He must be under huge pressure for the whole month. And then he can finally express all the anger with such a gesture. Wish he’ll not get into trouble.

  10. amy permalink
    May 4, 2011 17:23

    hahaha xabis tweets are hilarious. and that freudian slip is just priceless..

  11. Emily permalink
    May 4, 2011 17:23

    My thoughts EXACTLY about the pitch invasion. If Madrid got fined for that, Barca should as well, especially since theirs ran towards a player. That stuff’s funny when they’re just running around, but when they get close to players it’s scary!

    Also, I think Valdes might have been screaming at his defenders. At least, I like to think that.

    • Emily permalink
      May 4, 2011 17:26

      Also, SUPERNATURAL REFERENCE!!! I love that show :).

      Classy Xabi is classy while Xavi makes me gag. I hope none of our players ever get vain or cocky enough to honestly insult another club’s way of playing. So proud of my boys, and I hope that this doesn’t affect the nt (except for Busquets, I hope he’s dropped).

  12. mila_casillas permalink
    May 4, 2011 17:25

    I am not going to say much except that our players are complete class acts. And that the Rosell Freudian slip made me choke on my cupcake. :’)

    Oh and Pique seems to be growing up somewhat, no? He hasn’t been indulging in verbal vomit (unlike Xavi and the others) as he did last season. Must come from hanging with an older women.

    • Sanny permalink
      May 4, 2011 18:06

      Nah, Pique still had his “moments” this season what with the la manita thing and what the papers claimed and Iker alluded to him saying about them winning the Copa del Rey. But unlike Xavi, whom I think is just a bitter and sad man with a little man complex who truly believes all the crap he spouts, I think Pique is just childish and doesn’t really mean to be offensive with his comments. IMO, he just likes joking around and sometimes people take it and him too seriously and then he usually seems remorseful about it. At least that’s what I think, could be completely wrong though 🙂

      • kiki permalink
        May 5, 2011 14:07

        It’s still kind of funny when Pique is acting the most mature at the end of the match, though, isn’t it?

        It’s like the world has turned upside down or a sign of the apocolypse!

        Or perhaps it’s Shakira’s influence, hmmmmmm….

        • maddy permalink
          May 5, 2011 16:35

          probably. everyone knows she’s a madridista at heart.

        • DebS permalink
          May 5, 2011 19:53

          I’m putting my money on Shakira. Probably the fact that she’s a Madrid fan doesn’t hurt the situation either.

          Maybe she has a friend or someone she can hook Xavi up with. I’d like to see a dramatic change in him too. 😐

  13. Kiki permalink
    May 4, 2011 17:31

    Cris would probably be fined from UEFA. :-((

    Recognition for the courage at least.

  14. PepperPots permalink
    May 4, 2011 17:51

    So proud of this team. Actually, I think RM is starting a revolution over Barca. I mean, it is for me like they’re exposing Barca’s bad side. I think, that’s what Mou has been thinking since the Liga is kind of impossible already and the CL too after the home game, he might just as well expose how Barca is infested with cheaters. The football world is actually seeing it more clearly now.

  15. PepperPots permalink
    May 4, 2011 17:56

    Okay… another one… about the gesture this time. Haha. Did Iker really face the camera just to act that out? BAMF!

  16. IsaBella permalink
    May 4, 2011 18:03

    I’m proud of Madrid as well. We fought until the end (hasta el final…) and we did everything that we could to go through this. Unfortunately Barca cheated their way through the finals already in the ida so there was not much we could do yesterday, but I’m still happy we fought like this.
    Alvaro lifting his shirt… mmmm…. ❤
    actors indeed, but what can we do? the UEFA id dead behind them obviously… I think this is their main problem: they believe they're the center of the world and that literally no one can surpass them. I'm waiting for that serious kick in the ass they'll get. Obviously, Inter eliminating them from the CL final last year wasn't enough.
    that said, I coincido con Una: I'm proud of our boys. go Madrid! and go ManU!

    • DebS permalink
      May 5, 2011 19:56

      Yeah…gotta go with United for sure. I was amazed at how deep their bench was while watching yesterday’s match. But again, I wonder what tricks Barca has up their sleeves to win this one?

  17. maddy permalink
    May 4, 2011 18:14

    Real lost only once in 4 matches and Barca scored only once in 400+ minutes against 11 men.

  18. Wendy permalink
    May 4, 2011 18:19

    What did Xabi tweet?? Google translate made a mess of the translation…

    • May 5, 2011 07:32

      He said some statements attributed to him were false, and that there’s no audio or video proof. He was referring to the statement that he supposedly said that some players from La Roja have broken off relations.

      • DebS permalink
        May 5, 2011 20:20

        I tweeted Xabi back and told him that obviously they have confused him with Xavi because he’s the one who talks such trash.

        Poor guy, constantly being called “Xavi”. How embarrassing for him.

  19. Andrea permalink
    May 4, 2011 18:27

    “Eejits” always reminds me of Ren & Stimpy 🙂

    So proud of our team! It just goes to show that when the playing field is level, we are just as good as Barcelona. The past four games have shown that.

    • DebS permalink
      May 5, 2011 20:22

      exactly! And Barca knew that, which is why they had to cheat to beat Madrid. It’s easy to see that Barca can’t beat them 11 v 11.

  20. May 4, 2011 18:29

    I’m glad Iker stood up for this club, even though I’m sure UEFA will find some way to fine him for his words/gestures… Mou and Cris also made some “gestures” as well:

    I actually thought Mou & Cris’ gesture was kind of cute–like father, like son! XD

  21. May 4, 2011 18:39

    “I also liked how Barcelona celebrated their goal by doing what they do best – diving. It really was like a swimming pool out there, between the rain and Barcelona watering the field.”

    HAHAHA, that is perfect! Yeah, there were practically puddles at the corners of the pitch–it made me want to laugh at Xavi and his whining about how the grass was too long and dry at the Bernabeu. Was the grass wet enough for you, Xavi, hmm?

  22. captrick permalink
    May 4, 2011 18:48

    I saw this video from Marca:

    It said something about that “They robbed us” (“No han robado”), but I couldn’t understand what’s up with the hand signals.

    Is that how you signal “They robbed us” in Portuguese? Anyone?

  23. Janni permalink
    May 4, 2011 19:14

    I could not believe it happened again the unfair decision towards Real Madrid done by referee….can not trust the referee no more!!! We could ve won leg 2…*speechless*

  24. amouria permalink
    May 4, 2011 19:42

    Lovely post, as always. I am not sad at all because our players show class and maturity. They have fought till the end.
    Long live Real Madrid…

  25. May 4, 2011 19:47

    1- I am proud of our players.
    2- I have never seen Iker this angry. I agree with our captain, those refs ( both legs) were shameless.

    3- I believe we were robbed the chance to compete. You see Barcelona is a great club, I am not saying that we would have won had the refs not committed those mistakes BUT those games would have been really close. It would have been fair.

    4- I have to add that I think Mou should have done more tactically in the first leg but I am not going to go into that in this lovely blog. There are so many other places for that.

    5- Committing fouls and mouthing off each other on the pitch is one thing ( completely normal due to high tension, playing styles, tactics etc.) BUT belittling the way your rivals play over and over again whether they lose, win or tie is abnormal.

    6- So a question to Xavi, your team is ALWAYS superior and you are the only ones playing football right? He should take a look at the CDR first half and tell me who was superior and who hit the post. He should look at the first leg before the sending off and watch how they were only passing the ball around without any real threat. It is a shame because I feel like two of our classiest players ( Iker and Xabi) are disappointed with his comments and the fact that he never stops. Iker is close friends with him, they know each other for half their lives.

    7-You see if Barca plays possession football then it means that they are combining defense and attact. If the other team wants to play counter attacking football then it does not mean that they are not playing football ( there are other types you know).

    8- Due to the possession Barcelona has, it is normal for teams facing them to commit more fouls BUT not every dive is a foul and every foul is a yellow and every yellow is a red ( IMO Pepe’s red was not a foul). Do you see the opponents of Spain getting as many cards for much worse tackles?

    9- PK seems to have realized that his behavior off the pitch was wrong so he is trying to make up for it. That is nice and mature of him.

    10- What everyone can agree on is that we are glad this series of clasicos is over. I hope there are never this many clasicos in a short period of time and that things will be calm over the two legged Supercopa in August. Why the hell don’t they make it a one game final?

    11- I am not looking forward to the well-mannered Sevilla fans and their ball boys ( I think I read that they changed them to ball girls – not sure!)

    • May 4, 2011 21:09

      I would like to add that there were lots of times in which I have criticized some of Mou’s comments and hoped that he would tone it down. The thing with Mou is that he doesn’t have a holier than thou pretense about him. He has been this way in all the clubs he has coached. I still hope he tones it down though. His teams are always better during his second season.

      Flo better not overdo it with summer signings, this team has good prospects. I love them all except for Adebayor ( still have not developed an affection for him, I don’t hate him just neutral)

      Congrats to Barcelona and HALA MADRID!
      P.S: Sorry for the long comment!

  26. nikki permalink
    May 4, 2011 19:57

    Yes, the referee made some mistakes against RM and yes the Barcelona players dive/roll around way too easy and in a shamefull way. To foul the opposing team and deceive the ref.

    But Madrid were not the better team and they also didn’t play better football. If they played the first leg of the semi final like they did yesterday they probably would have won or equalled in the Bernabeu.
    And about the ref last night.He made some faultive decisions against RM but he did keep Carvalho in the game, who could’ve easily been sent of with two yellows. Also Adebayor made some nasty kicks to the opponent and got away with only a warning.

    To make a long story short. You can’t blame your loss on everyone else and not take some of it yourself.

    Also the overreacting off the Barca players is freaking appalling!! Mascherano, Pedro and Pique with his wrist. blegh.

  27. Karla permalink
    May 4, 2011 19:58

    Even if we lost, at least every Madridista had the chance to see true sportsmanship in action. The amount of restraint and tact that our players have shown is nothing short of admirable.
    Now I am curious about the team that will play Barca in the CL finals … just to see if the same amount of fouls will be given to the opposing team.

  28. SunnyK permalink
    May 4, 2011 20:02

    The show you’re referring to, is it Ren & Stimpy? Ha! (I must commend your restraint, I’d have called them MUCH worse names that just “eejits!”)

    I highly doubt there’ll be any sort of investigation against Barca regarding anything that went on yesterday. Unless it’s some trumped up charge against Real, I really don’t see UEFA batting an eyelash. If they didn’t acknowledge the racism against Marcelo the first time, it will surely go unpunished this time around. I honestly feel the entire organization is a joke at this point. Don’t know why anyone should bother watching the tournament.

    Oh well, we move on to next year. It was nice to see Cristiano & (I believe) Adan watching tennis today! Novak Djokovic tweeted this pic of himself with Cristiano

    Also, an intesting read in the Wall St. Journal (O_o) about Barca.
    Love the title of the article, “The World’s Greatest Whiners.”

    • DebS permalink
      May 5, 2011 20:09

      AMAZING that the WSJ has chimed in. It’s good to see that it’s not just Madridistas that are put off by all the drama from Barca.

      Is there any glimmer of hope that all the negative press around the world will have some effect on UEFA? ummm….probably not.

    • emily permalink
      May 6, 2011 03:44

      “Steempee – yoo fat stoopeed eedee-it.”

  29. Vanessa permalink
    May 4, 2011 20:20

    Real Madrid showed last night why I love this team, they fight for each other, for us and for our club. I will forever be proud to be a Madridista and I would rather lose as Real Madrid than win like Barcelona.

    I may go on a little rant, hope you don’t mind. 🙂 In my opinion the UEFA has too much power, if anyone says anything against them they get fined, sanctioned or both. I know they have to have rules/regulations to avoid people running their mouths but when you cannot say your opinion in fear of their wrath is a little disconcerting. I’m sure the racists chants and pitch invasion from Camp Nou will go unpunished. Perhaps they will open an investigation but only to save face, that is if the Ref includes these incidents in his report. I don’t know if the UEFA favoritism towards Barcelona is due to its Presidents admiration for them or if it goes deeper than that. I’m not one to necessarily believe in conspiracy theories but you never know. It will be interesting to see what happens when they meet May 6th and even MORE interesting to see what happens in the final. The world is watching so the UEFA has to be careful on how they proceed.

    To end with a happy note, look how far we have come in just a short few months! Imagine what we will look like next year, this team is destined for greatness i can feel it!!! As always Hala Madrid!

  30. Agustina permalink
    May 4, 2011 20:25

    I love this team now more than ever!
    We must stay together!
    Hala Madrid!

  31. Didi permalink
    May 4, 2011 20:51

    I think that the boys can be really proud of themselves. I know I am!! Although I’m really sad for the boys but somehow more for Xabi. Because watching last nights game, I had the feeling that Xabi was the only one who was constantly putting pressure on Barcelona. Don’t get me wrong, the whole squad fought every minute of the game. But sometimes I had the feeling that the squad didn’t believe in a victory anymore and they just let Barca do their own thing. But Xabi was always running and keeping pressure although he knew that they wouldn’t go through the final.

    But overall, I am really proud of them. Of how they’ve won the Copa, how they’ve reached the semi’s of the CL and how they’ve played the whole season. HALA MADRID!!!

    • Kirstin permalink
      May 5, 2011 08:21

      I also did notice Xabi trying to unleash his through balls and long-range passes in this game as he had been often limited to shorter passes during the last couple of El Clasicos. Nevertheless, I am still proud of this team. (and I LOVE LOVE LOVE Xabi’s, Iker’s, Cristiano’s and Karanka’s post-game comments!!!!!!!!!)

  32. Emily permalink
    May 4, 2011 21:03

    The pitch invader was Jimmy Jump, who does that all the time, always gets fined for it and still continues to do it.

    Anyway, I’m so proud of the way our boys handled themselves last night. Bravo to Iker, Cris and Xabi for speaking out about their frustrations. I really don’t care if they get fined, especially because what they’re saying is true. To me, Cris’ and Xabi’s words really show how much Madrid means to them. I’m proud to be a Madridista 🙂

    Great post, Una.

    • DebS permalink
      May 5, 2011 20:15

      I thought the same thing about the comments from those three. It just goes to show the level of frustration they feel, as it is pretty uncharacteristic for them to make comments like this, imo.

      As for Cris’ comment about just handing Barca the trophy, I understand he was just venting his frustration and doesn’t actually expect that to happen. He’s right. There’s just too much money on the line from all the ticket sales, advertising, etc. for them to forfeit all the games. So much for the beautiful game…it’s all about profits now.

  33. Suhaila permalink
    May 4, 2011 21:18

    I am so proud of the team! They showed such class playing in such a difficult game. As always Una, your blog is such a pleasure to read and never fails to cheer us up! I feel that in EVERY game played against Barcelona, the referees are so biased. Higuain’s goal was ABSOLUTELY legal, which is what frustrates me. I used to be neutral between Barcelona and Madrid but after the last four games, Barcelona are definitely losing my support. I always thought they were great players ( no doubt they are ) but the way they act on the pitch totally contradicts that. Mascherano was never like that until he joined Barca which is a shame. I hope that the players realise that unsportsmanlike behaviour reflects incredibly badly on themselves and shows absolutely no class or pride.
    Once again, I am proud of the team, of all they have had to put up with against Barca and how greatly they reacted (some of the Barca players could benefit from reacting the same way if they paid attention).

    Proud to be a madridista.

    & I’m also happy to have come across such an EXCELLENT blog that I have been following religiously for almost half a year now!

    Keep it up, Una!

  34. Mary permalink
    May 4, 2011 21:47

    So UEFA will pursue a rude hand gesture or comments made in post-game interviews, but racist statements made on the pitch don’t seem to be a priority. And Barcelona has tacitly acknowledged that Busquets did in fact make those “mono” slurs at Marcelo by not immediately crying “slander” as they did for just about every other comment Madrid made. This whole thing reflects so poorly on both UEFA and Barca, what an embarrassment. I am of course disappointed that Madrid did not make the final but I wouldn’t trade them for Barcelona in a million years. Hala Madrid!

    • DebS permalink
      May 5, 2011 20:17

      “I am of course disappointed that Madrid did not make the final but I wouldn’t trade them for Barcelona in a million years. Hala Madrid!”

      agreed! At least Madrid went out with dignity. Barca may have advanced but, as many in the world agree, they did not do it on their own merit and without harming their reputation.

  35. Kirstin permalink
    May 4, 2011 22:00

    As if we haven’t already said it enough– I am so proud of Real Madrid. Really.

    And HA HA HA I literally laughed out loud because I seriously thought you copied/pasted Xavi’s post-game comments onto today’s ICYMI edition. I do not understand why reporters even bother asking him about his opinions regarding the game. *yawns*

    Sure thing, statistics imply that Barcelona were the dominant team in terms of possession but the supposedly “inferior” Real Madrid managed to equalize… and had one disallowed goal that, to me (and others), should have been allowed. Wow, that sure is some inferiority, huh, Xavi Hernandez?

    I love how we’re seeing emotions from Iker regarding the injustice that we’ve constantly been receiving from UEFA. If UEFA is a prestigious affiliation, I suggest they live up to their prestige. But as usual, we are the bad guys… I also love love love love Xabi’s allusion to Xavi’s remarks. Witty Xabi is very witty indeed.


  36. rojafan permalink
    May 4, 2011 22:54

    Thanks so much for all this work. I can’t believe how much I missed when I only left the room a couple of minutes at a time! I missed the pitch invasion and I just missed Pipita’s goal. I got back in time to hear the announcers saying that Mascherano had “got lucky”, but they didn’t replay the goal, just the “tackle”. I did catch that moment between Xabi Alonso and Iniesta, but my Spanish isn’t good enough to lip read. Any guesses as to what was said?

  37. mickymacky permalink
    May 4, 2011 23:10

    the sad thing is, even though iker and aitor are right — that millions of people saw what happened on the pitch, a fair number of those people are always gonna be too busy falling over themselves licking barca’s boots to form an objective opinion… oh well…

    it’s always gonna be frustrating when the evidence is there in front of your eyes but unfortunately, like barca, you’re happily rolling (and rolling some more) on the grass content with your beautiful football… ahhh, justice, indeed.

  38. evita permalink
    May 4, 2011 23:35

    This was an excellent post. They did so well. The officiating wasn’t a complete attrocity like before. However, IMO, that is only due to the fact that so many people have called FARCA and UEFA out for their bullcrap. I honestly, don’t believe that either organization thought that anyone would see through the bs. This is what happens when you believe your own press.

    RM played a good game. They played on their feet like MEN. When Barca overcome the fear of losing to RM, and are willing to stand and play on THEIR FEET, like men, I will entertain them being a great club.

  39. Quarrymen permalink
    May 4, 2011 23:59

    Bless this post. It’s hard to be so civil when there appears to be so much injustice but you are great!
    I think our players showed a lot of class in the last 2 games and I so glad and proud that I support Real Madrid.

    (this is a really lame guess, but when I was younger, I’d always hear the term eejits on the television show ‘Father Ted’. So that is my lame and probably wrong guess!)

  40. Sasha Twen permalink
    May 5, 2011 00:50

    What an awesome post! It always feels good to come back here and read your write-ups.

    Thanks also for the link to the Özil interview. I don’t speak Turkish (as his mother chose to answer in that language), but I am German and understood that Nese said Mesut’s “very affectionate” (“liebevoll” = caring, kind). It literally means “full of love”. I don’t doubt he’s very family-oriented, as he says so himself quite often, but that’s not exactly what she said in that snippet. 🙂

    Keep up the great work!

    • Ally permalink
      May 5, 2011 10:20

      Haha, I love the If it continued-posts on Dirty Tackle! Brooks is a genius 🙂

  41. May 5, 2011 02:02

    That disallowed goal will haunt me for some time, I think. I usually don’t listen to the complaining about the referees, especiall the Barca-specific complaints because I don’t think the complaining helps anyone. In this instance, though, I’m having seconds thoughts about the preferential treatment Barca seems to get. I don’t understand how the referee missed Pique’s push on Ronaldo, if he saw Cris hitting Mascherano. It doesn’t make sense at all.

    I dont’ understand why that gesture, if it indeed means “shameless” would result in sanctions from UEFA? Is it a particularly offensive gesture in Spain? Because I don’t get how that could be offensive, but swearing and cursing on the field isn’t. And don’t even get me started on the monkey chants. Any news if that was noted by the referee in his match report?

  42. blitzen permalink
    May 5, 2011 02:17

    I see you comment on the monkey chants at the Camp Nou, but not the ones last week at the Bernabeu? Don’t be hypocritical, una, it doesn’t become you. Racism is ugly wherever it crops up, but don’t make it seem like Barca fans are any worse than Madrid’s. This is Spain we are talking about.

    And this? And would an example of “the values of Barça” be licking your lips as you watch your captain cavort topless around the field?

    Homophobia much? Seriously, that’s just petty. And nasty. I expected better from you.

    I actually came in here to congratulate your team on playing a decent entertaining game of football. Casillas was my MOTM, he saved everything thrown at him except one. CRonaldo was excellent as well, and Di Maria showed that he can be a fantastic player when he remembers to stay on his feet (yes, Barca has divers too, but come on, be honest, Dive Maria is one of the worst).

    Right. Enjoy your cesspool of bile and bitterness. What a lovely legacy Mourinho has left you with. I’m off to mail my cule cheque to the referee, since, you know, they are all in Barca’s pay.

    • May 5, 2011 07:50

      Blitzen, I honestly had not heard about monkey chants at the Bernabéu during last week’s game, can you point me in the direction where you heard that?

      I also don’t understand how that statement can be construed to be homophobic. The focus was on the actions, not the persons doing it. It just happened that right after TVE showed Puyol without a shirt, they cut to Rosell licking his lips. Actually, I’d probably do the same thing if I were him.

      And just to let you know, I for one am not bitter at all. Like I said in the post, I’m proud of my team. And that feeling does not mesh well with bitterness, and I prefer to be proud and optimistic.

      I guess I can’t seem to do any right in your eyes, so you are more than welcome to stop reading this blog, if that’s the way you feel. I’ll understand if that’s what you want.

      • May 5, 2011 12:28

        I’ll say this, Una you are a lot more diplomatic than what I can ever hope to be.

        • May 5, 2011 14:30

          Well, I prefer to be diplomatic, but the commentator already called me hypocritical, homophobic and bitter, so I can’t imagine what else would be thrown at me if I had decided not to be diplomatic.

      • blitzen permalink
        May 5, 2011 14:22

        Graham Hunter mentioned it on his twitter, said they were the worst he had ever heard.

        • May 5, 2011 14:35

          Then of course I condemn it. These types of actions have no place anywhere. Would you like me to write a post about it, so you can believe that I wasn’t being hypocritical?

        • blitzen permalink
          May 5, 2011 16:27

          It’s your blog, you can post what you like. I come here because I enjoy what you do, and I even like some of the members of your team (Alonso, Casillas, Ozil). If you honestly weren’t aware of the chants at the Bernabeu then I take back what I said. I just get tired of the constant “we’re perfect, and they are horrible cheats” refrains (from both sides). Honestly, I can’t wait until Mourinho leaves, because he has really brought nothing but poison and shame to a club I once respected.

          Oh, and the homophobia thing. Maybe I overreacted, but when you implied that Rosell licking his lips at naked Puyol was somehow against Barca values, it just rubbed me the wrong way. I don’t like Rosell any more than you do, but that was over the top.

        • Jenny permalink
          May 5, 2011 17:40

          Twitter is not a source.

        • May 5, 2011 19:42

          For the love of God, YOUR TEAM WON! Stop arguing with a Madridista on a Real Madrid site and go celebrate. Or get a life. Or anything else except spew your crap here.

          I don’t know why you even bother even talking with people like this Una. It’s like banging your head against a brick wall. Repeatedly.

    • Sunny permalink
      May 5, 2011 14:39

      How is that homophobic?

  43. debsen permalink
    May 5, 2011 02:49

    BTW, if the security at Camp Nou is that lax, Una, you should attend when Atletico Bilbao are visiting. I know which player you’d be gunning for on the field :).

  44. Pam permalink
    May 5, 2011 03:23

    your captain cavort topless around the field

    So, Puyi can only cavort topless when he is in the SNT locker room (when Queen of Spain visited them in South Africa) or after an SNT game, but not during an El Clasico? I seem to remember you being appreciative about Puyi showing his thighs or going shirtless or whatever in the other blog 🙂

    • May 5, 2011 07:51

      No, where in that sentence do I express my disapproval of Puyol doing that? I completely encourage it! In fact, I wish our captain would learn that lesson and do the same!

      • Pam permalink
        May 5, 2011 08:59

        Your choice of the word (“cavort”) made me interpret it as disapproval. I think you’d have chosen a far nicer word if you wanted to express approval of shirtless Puyi 🙂

        As for Iker, you and I both know he will have some sort of undershirt if someone does convince him to remove his shirt 😦 I think I may have seen a truly shirtless Iker just once in about a year, thought it’s quite possible that I may have just imagined it!

        • May 5, 2011 11:48

          The dictionary defines it as: “to behave in a high-spirited, festive manner,” which is what the Barcelona players were doing, no? Is there any negative connotation to the word? Because right now there are some Barcelona supporters that want to find fault in any and every little thing I write, and they’re very quick to believe I’m being disrespectful.

        • Pam permalink
          May 5, 2011 17:19

          Regardless of dictionary definition, I haven’t seen it being used in polite context. And I read quite a lot…. So I felt compelled to comment. Of course, you do not need to take it personally or offer justification. It is your blog and you are free to write how you like.

          For the record, I am not a Barca-only supporter (although I love their pass-happy football but not when they start employing diving tactics and whining to refrees). I am a Spanish NT supporter and I follow players from both teams (as well as NT players from Villareal, Bilbao, Valencia etc.) and as such I read both your blogs.

    • DebS permalink
      May 5, 2011 20:31

      I certainly didn’t take it as a “negative” comment. I don’t recall Una EVER being critical of the chance to see a shirtless player, particularly a La Roja player.

  45. May 5, 2011 03:53

    yes..we sad,,cry,,disappointed,,when Higuain’s goal was rejected by the referee,,even still unbelievable about this result 😦
    In this situation many confrontations about referee,, critic from Real Madrid and Barcelona..and I’m disappointed it will break Spain’s team 😦
    I like Pique and Xabi when they were shaking hand..sportive man 😀

    any results,,win or lose..we always become Madridista..siempre Madridista ^^

    • DebS permalink
      May 5, 2011 20:33

      I agree. It was good to see Iker & Arbeloa sticking around to congratulate them. Way to raise the bar, guys!

  46. Forest permalink
    May 5, 2011 03:54

    THANK GOODNESS – it’s over. It’s painful and disappointing but at least we went out fighting in this game.

    There is too much crap surrounding these Clásicos that destroys what the beautiful game is meant to be. As a fan of La Roja and as a Madridista, I’m heartbroken to see all that has passed in the last few games. And as happy and proud as I am of winning the Copa, and grateful for what Mourinho has managed to accomplish (which is quite a lot for a first year coach) – I SINCERELY HOPE HE DOES NOT STAY FOR A SECOND SEASON.

    The game stats are never in our favor. But worse than that, Mourinho is TOO MUCH DRAMA. And admit it – the UNICEF reference was a shame to our club, and all the conspiracy theories make us sound like sore losers. That stuff is just EMBARRASSING. It’s a game. We played with all we got. We win some. We lose some. OUR TEAM SHOULD BE ABOVE ALL THAT. We have AMAZING and TALENTED players. We need someone more like Del Bosque (no drama!) who knows how to harness talent and display it well on the field.

    And thank goodness the sportsmanship of Iker has been unbelievable and saintly throughout the last few games. He always makes us look good =) and allows us to be proud of the club. And what saves in the last game!!!!!! Incredible.

    Una – “eejits” sounds familiar. Even tried googling it for a reference, but to no avail. So curious? What’s your favorite TV show?!?!

    Thanks for your blogs! Always entertaining =)

    • kiki permalink
      May 5, 2011 14:23

      It would be a shame to stop the course we are on now. Mourinho is dramatic, but he has also shone a light on they very issues that mar the sport in Spain. Do you know that many all over the world consider la Liga a complete joke of a league.

      Mourinho brings so much worldwide attention. He is in the middle of a campaign of change that stands a good chance of improving the situation vastly for Real Madrid and the League. It would be a sign of cowardice to let him go now.

      In the Prem there is not a Club, despite protestations, who would not love to have him as manager.

      Change is the one constant in life. We should not be afraid of it. Prejudice or fear of upsetting the applecart are harding good reasons for ending a project which has already yielded great results, including showing the ugly side of the sport, which exists and does not come from Mourinho.

      La Liga should settle down a bit regarding their anti-Mourinho sentiments. All the hens of La Liga got into a tizzy, when the rooster that is Mourinho, showed up. Many in la Liga would like to halt the successful Real Madrid empire he is building, but if it is allowed to get rolling, we will be unstoppable.

      He makes the sport much more interesting and enjoyable, which is why everyone else wants him. Players love him. There is still a show dedicated to him in England and he can right his own ticket. It’s a power shift that was needed in our club in order to create stability. No one else was strong enough to handle our administration.

      • krasis permalink
        May 5, 2011 17:23

        to Kiki

        Love your post. Very insightful!!!

      • DebS permalink
        May 5, 2011 20:41

        I agree. Just looking at the transformation of the team and the individual players since the beginning of the year is amazing.

        One thing that I really appreciate about Mou is that he rewards his players for working hard in practice and having good games with playing time. It has brought out the best in players by upping the competitive bar, letting them know that no matter what their playing status was before, he will not hesitate to start someone over you, if you are under performing.

        He knows his players and is not afraid to switch the positions of players. My favorite was when he moved Di Maria to left-back early on in the season. Many people thought he was nuts when he did it but then when they saw how well Di Maria filled the role, they were all impressed.

        Love him or hate him, he’s the best coach for Madrid, imo.

  47. Maisoun permalink
    May 5, 2011 04:33

    I am so unbelievably proud of our team & to call myself a Madridista. We’ve come so far this season, made mistakes, learned, suffered injuries, but came out stronger. The team has accomplished so much! We’re Copa del Rey Champions!!! Of course Im hurt & angry that Madrid isnt going to the finals, its completely unfair..I would’ve loved to see them lift (& possibly drop) another trophy this season 😉 But in all seriousness, Im so happy to have a break from these Clasicos, its time to heal the heartache and be ready to kick ass next season because we’re going to take all three championships!!! Hala Madrid!

    • Stella permalink
      May 5, 2011 12:54

      100 % agree!!!

      And Lass was amazing on the last game, he was the best man on that pitch last night. Happy to see a good player like him. We / they learned a lot from this season and next season they gone some kick as!

      Always and forever: HALA MADRID!!!

      • DebS permalink
        May 5, 2011 20:44

        I totally agree about Lass. That man was on a mission yesterday!

        I also have to give a shout out to Marcelo and not just for the goal. He TOTALLY shut Messi down on more than one occasion. I thought he had a really good game.

  48. kiki permalink
    May 5, 2011 05:35

    Thank you Una for the wise, funny, beautiful and hot post. Angry Xabi UNF, I am overwhelmed!!!

    I have never been happier after losing such an important match. I am just so proud of our men. They showed such class & honor and HONESTY, in the midst of being so wronged. I’ve never loved them more.

    The crime would be to punish them for speaking the truth that we all saw with our own eyes. That is what happens under evil dictatorships, punishment for speaking the truth.

    PS. If anyone missed it The Wall Street Journal wrote a scathing article about Barcelona, after the first leg.

    This is a major newspaper with a massive following. A lot of big, big money folks & regular people read it & are finding out the truth.

    UEFA stand to lose a lot of money if they don’t straighten up their act.

    There is a massive emerging market forming in the USA, after the WC and the Wall Street Journal is a major & highly respected paper there!

    You know nothing matters to FIFA/UEFA more than money & the idea that football is worthless because of the cheating & poor officials is being spread there.

    People there and other countries could begin to lose interest if they feel the competition is basically a sham.

    I have never seen such an obvious display of blatant corruption in ANY SPORT other than BOXING or perhaps Horseracing, but in those sports it was historical…it was worse a long time ago.

    There is always corruption & cheating, but UEFA seems to have forgotten to be subtle about it. It is UEFA’s job to insure that the match is fair OR AT LEAST LOOKS FAIR. They let Barca get away with it.

    We love the Beautiful game for itself, but those corrupt organisations seem to love money more, so they’d better shape up.

    Other than that, have a wonderful day. Don’t believe the jealous wank. We need to stay the course. If we do, I can clearly see an amazing season on the horizon! Hala Madrid! 🙂

    • Forest permalink
      May 5, 2011 09:02

      oh no! no no no way. the WSJ is hardly the place where one would look for “the truth.” this is not the place for politics, but since the paper was bought in 2007 by super conservative Rupert Murdoch… truth and opinion are one and the same. the paper even disputes global-warming – which is basically a scientific fact…

      • kiki permalink
        May 5, 2011 14:33

        What a response. This article has absolutely nothing to do with politics, therefore your response is invalid.

        Spain, however, is the league that seems to have an unhealthy marriage of politics and sport more than most progressive countries.

        The article was not about politics. It was about sport. It was written from a venue that is neutral to the politics of Spain. One of the greatest problems faced in La Liga is that politics, or the echos of old memories of politics, bleed into the sport and dirty it’s results.

        Sports writing in the Wall Street Journal is not impacted by politics. Your political leanings one way or the other do not change the fact that this article shone a light on facts that were witnessed worldwide by conservatives, liberals, neutrals, etc.

        It’s a very refreshing artice, which like most of us, admits the beautiful aspects of Barcelona’s game. It also clearly shows the other side, that all unbiased folks have become aware of.

        • DebS permalink
          May 5, 2011 20:51

          I agree. It’s amazing how people everywhere try to turn everything into politics.

          The WSJ is a huge paper with a lot of draw. Go to any newstand across the country and I can guarantee you that the WSJ and USA Today will be there. So for the WSJ to even take an interest in the issue is huge, particularly in the US, where football(soccer) is usually a byline and never a front page article, even in the sports section. Well at least in the Chicago area where we are lucky to get over 13,000 fans at a Fire game.

          Also the WSJ is huge in the business world. So yeah, it’s amazing that there was an article of this nature in the WSJ.

  49. May 5, 2011 07:21

    I love 4b, I can totally see Rosell being a perv! And Mascherano made me lose faith in Argentina’s NT; honestly captain, you give Argentine football a bad name, I hope this behaviour doesn’t carry over to the NT.

  50. noelle permalink
    May 5, 2011 08:11

    all i know is barcelona have truly lost my respect and who all is with me in cheering for manchester united!!!!….. i hope they kick the crap out of barcelona…. barcelona and their good morals and upstanding players lol, i’ve never heard so much bullshit in my life, theres as much good morals on that team as there are at the gates of hell… i dont always agree with what mou says but he’s a good coach and he loves his players and he’s just passionate about the sport and his team…. if he sees something thats not right its good that he calls ppl out on their bullshit…. if its one thing we accomplished this season, we denied barca of their treble which they seem to think they’re just gonna win everything ever year and now the world knows what a bunch of cheaters they are….. lets go manchester united!!!!!!

  51. Lily permalink
    May 5, 2011 09:05

    First of all, I just wanted to say, this is a wonderful blog, and I really wish there was a culé out there like you. Also, I should warn you all that I’m a culé, so you don’t get caught up in reading this post if you don’t want to. I’m not here to troll; I just enjoy reading things from both perspectives.

    Madrid put up a great fight tonight but you guys have to admit that the ref wasn’t the reason Real tied/lost. He could easily have sent off (and probably should have) Carvalho, Lass, and Adebayor. Real committed 31 fouls last night, a record in Champions League matches. Pedro too was lucky to get away with a yellow on Lass, even though he didn’t make contact. I am the first to admit that Busquets is disgustingly quick to fall to the ground. But I feel like I have to stick up for Pedrito (although I don’t think you mentioned him here). He dived in the last Clásico and now he has been labeled a diver by people who see him play only once in a great while, but the fact is that he barely. ever. dives. But for Busquets and Alves, there are players like Messi, who never dives, even when three or four Real players crowd him off the ball (and 11 of those 31 fouls were committed against him).

    As for Xavi, I understand that he can be extremely arrogant, but he bleeds blaugrana, he’s been there since he was a child, and now he’s what, 31? Also, for him and a lot of Catalans (as you no doubt already know), FC Barcelona is an outlet for nationalist pride as well, particularly against Real Madrid, and so he can seem excessively boastful and ideological about football and Barça at times. However, I don’t believe his comments are any more disrespectful than Mourinho’s, Ronaldo’s, and even Casillas’s and Xabi’s, who basically spat on Barcelona’s success and preferred to invent wild and cynical conspiracy theories, rather than congratulate them and accept their loss. Barcelona players did no such thing after the Copa del Rey (they just stuck to Xavi-esque arrogance). There is a difference, in my opinion, between staying true to your footballing style and accusing the other side of cheating in order to win.

    As for the disallowed goal? Piqué fouled Ronaldo, and at that point the ref gave advantage to Real. However, Ronaldo then fell onto Mascherano and impeded his run–otherwise he would have reached the ball before Higuaín and made a clearance. It wasn’t intentional, but it doesn’t have to be–regardless of intention, a foul is still a foul. Yes, Mascherano milked it, but let’s be honest with ourselves. Who wouldn’t have milked it? The most Real deserved from that incident was a free kick rewarded for Piqué’s foul on Ronaldo. However, I can understand your anger, because, being honest again, I would have been upset if it had been a Barça goal that had been disallowed on those grounds.

    But anyway, I would like to congratulate Madrid on a match well played, especially after the disgusting displays from both sides in the last leg. And I say this with all due respect, but I believe in complaining about Barcelona’s diving/inventing Unicefarato conspiracy theories, Mou (and you, madridistas) is doing Madrid a disservice. You have a brilliant side that in any other league in the world would be in first place, and that won the Copa del Rey. You also have a wonderful history of madridismo and great success, and should focus on football, win or lose. Don’t drag others down, lift yourselves up. As a culé I can say I greatly miss the days of Raúl, when el clásico was about football and nothing else (although I can’t say I miss the whole Figo thing). Right now I think we can all agree that 4 clásicos are way too many in a row.

    • maddy permalink
      May 5, 2011 12:32


      “I don’t believe his comments are any more disrespectful than Mourinho’s, Ronaldo’s, and even Casillas’s and Xabi’s, who basically spat on Barcelona’s success and preferred to invent wild and cynical conspiracy theories, “.

      i dont think you’re going to get much support on that statement here in this blog. casillas and xabi being disrespectful? if the roles were reversed and barcelona lost the tie due to biased refereeing, i doubt xavi would be saying after the game ‘real madrid deserved to win and we’re so very happy for them’. be real. in fact, even after the CDR final, xavi was all about how the best team didnt win and thats how it is in football sometimes. gracious? i think not.

      xabi and casillas each have more class and respect than the whole barcelona starting 11 + their manager put together. and that’s a fact.

      also, messi does take a dive occasionally. also its not some miracle that he stays on his feet with four defenders around him. thats what he’s supposed to do. ozil does it all the time.

      “As for the disallowed goal? Piqué fouled Ronaldo, and at that point the ref gave advantage to Real. However, Ronaldo then fell onto Mascherano and impeded his run–otherwise he would have reached the ball before Higuaín and made a clearance. It wasn’t intentional, but it doesn’t have to be–regardless of intention, a foul is still a foul.”

      so pique fouled ronaldo, advantage madrid. shouldnt play have stopped at that. the consequent ‘foul’ on mascherano wouldnt count then right? also, what was ronaldo supposed to do when pique pushed him in mascherano’s direction? change direction of fall in mid air to avoid killing mascherano?

      “Yes, Mascherano milked it, but let’s be honest with ourselves. Who wouldn’t have milked it?”

      milked it? understating much? and if you think thats a ‘challenge’ any honest player would milk, i dont know what else to say. another thing he ‘milked’, the nonexistent foul from Lass. messi did some milking of his own from the sliding challenge from marcelo. roly poly pudding and pie.

      also, i think its really disrespectful how everyone is trying to get madridistas to hate our coach. he’s not your coach, he’s ours. and we love him.

      one man’s conspiracy theory, another man’s reality.

    • Ally permalink
      May 5, 2011 13:08

      I respect you! You say some true things. I don’t like it that Mou and some players accuse the ref either.
      We have to accept this loss and continue.

    • Sunny permalink
      May 5, 2011 14:43

      Except Cristiano didn’t foul Mascherano at all. Cris fell and Mascherano found an opportunity to make up for the fact that Higuain had gotten the better of him.

      And Messi dives too. Stop acting like he never does.

    • Gina permalink
      May 6, 2011 04:17

      “for him and a lot of Catalans (as you no doubt already know), FC Barcelona is an outlet for nationalist pride as well”

      The thing is Xavi talks like that not only against RM. He said almost exactly the same things against EPL teams, other La Liga teams etc. To stay true to your footballing style is nice, but to me, it IS disrespectful to imply any other style is not football. Barcelona =/= football.

  52. nadi permalink
    May 5, 2011 12:37

    What bugs me the most, is that my friends who cheer Barcelona, actually BELIEVE that they deserved to qualify and that justice was served.
    one of them even told me that pipita’s goal was justly disallowed, because (according to him) CR7 lost the ball to mascherano and so he fouled him 😦
    but still madridistas, i think the boys did a wonderful job this year and the special one changed alot for a better outcome next year.
    don’t be sad and remember: we are the kings of football
    no one can take this away from us… not even stupid referees neither great Oscar winning actors 😉


  53. superfan permalink
    May 5, 2011 16:38

    So proud of our team!!! I honestly cannot wait for next season. Obviously, making it to the final and winning the 10th cup would be the perfect dream but I cannot ask for more from this team. We have a new coach, new and young players, and a half-constructed team. Making it this far in the competition made me so happy already! And if Barcelona and the refs did not screw us over, we would’ve made it to the final!!!!

    Thank you so much for this awesome post!! I am so tired of Barcelona getting special treatment from the ref or from UEFA. I won’t even be surprised if they fond yet another reason to file a case against the club or a player. So tired.

    Hala Madrid!!!! 🙂

  54. Pammie permalink
    May 5, 2011 17:31

    Thanks for this great post!

    I for one am glad that the weeks of clasicos are over (well until August :P). My favourite match was the copa del rey finale- not only because we won that one, but also because I loved how they played in the first half. They did us proud on Tuesday as well. The first leg of the semi finale I just want to forget, because it was awful to watch them play for a 0-0, that’s not Madrid!

    I’m glad that our players spoke their minds. But I’m not happy about the gestures Cristiano and Mourinho made at the airport.
    I hope everyone at the club has cooled off now and we won’t hear complaints about refs for a long time. We are Madrid, we win no matter what! Blaming everyone else (though it WAS justified after the 1st leg of the CL semis) but the own strategy and players is not getting us any more points in the table or a place in the CL finale. And never again I want to hear things like we were playing for a 0-0 at home.
    Getting out of the Season with our dignity intact should also be one of the goals.

    I am very happy with what the team has reached this season and it shows big promise for next season. :’)

  55. Pammie permalink
    May 5, 2011 17:58

    oh and Jimmy Jump even announced that he’s planning on putting a hat on Mourinho, so it’s not like they couldn’t have done anything about the pitch invasion of this attention hog.

  56. ChinUp permalink
    May 5, 2011 19:43

    Watched this with a friend who’s not into football at all and he was appalled by the amount of acting on display on the pitch. Anyways, I’m still proud of the boys and I really can’t wait to see what Mou will do with the team come next season! Let’s think positively! It’s Mou’s only first year and we reached the UCL semis, won the CDR cup (still a contender for Supercopa!) and managed to have questions circulate around the credibility and possible biases shown by referees and UEFA towards/against certain teams. Hala Madrid! Thanks again for your blog Una!

  57. warriorprincess permalink
    May 5, 2011 19:45

    Everybody is dedicated to it’s own opinion. So please, to all barca fans out there who’s got nothing to do but judge Una’s opinion, mind your own business. Why read this blog and misunderstood what it says??? Please show some respect if you want to be respected too.

    Una, like our team, you deserve all the respect. Thank’s a lot.=)

  58. mar permalink
    May 5, 2011 20:23

    that goal that was annuled upseted me… they shouldn’t have done it!
    I liked the barcelona’s celebration, too…
    thank god el clasicos are over for now, i wouldn’t be able to see more!

  59. DebS permalink
    May 5, 2011 21:11

    Surely, I couldn’t have been the only one to feel cheated that Sergio was on the pitch in the pouring rain, was I? At least that could have taken some of the sting out of the loss. :\

    I was really proud of the guys. They played their hearts out even though the deck was stacked against them.

    I must say though that I was quite surprised to see Kaka start over Ozi and then Adaboyer to be subbed instead of Benz. I guess I just don’t see what Mou sees in Adaboyer over Benz.

    God love Adaboyer for trying to influence the game but some of his challenges where just plain silly and thuggish, imo. And I do have to agree that Carvalho was a bit fortunate not to receive another card for at least one of his subsequent challenges.

    It was quite ridiculous that the call that was made was against Cris when clearly his “foul” was a result of the foul from Pique. At the very least once the advantage from Cris’ foul was lost that the Pique’s foul should have been called. As much as the first goal would have had some impact on the game, I can’t help but feel that this would have only resulted in more of the crap we saw in the first game from Barca.

    I do have to give Iniesta credit. That was a beautiful pass from him to set up the Pedro goal. For me, he was man of the match for Barca. I can’t hate on him. I just can’t. I sure wish they’d give him a shot at commenting after the game instead of Xavi. For some reason, I feel he would not hurt Barca’s reputation as much as Xavi’s comments have.

    I too love Marcelo’s hair. Una, I think he’s trying to get recognition in the Bay Watch section. What do you think? 😉

  60. Tere permalink
    May 6, 2011 09:56

    i’ve came here several times, but this time i decide too give a comment .


    thats all….


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