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I miss them all already

May 24, 2011

More bits and pieces… you better get used to this, because the majority of the posts during this summer break will probably have this format.

They’ve got moves: to start off with, a couple more moments from the game against Almería, with a focus on the dance prowess of Cristiano and Manu Adebayor.  I hope you’re not tired of seeing moments from this game, because these moments have to last us until the end of July!

Postgame fun: and a couple of people commented about wanting to see these moments, so here they are: Manu interrupting Cris’ postgame interview, and Mou waving and patting his heart at the fans who kept chanting his name.

Welcome back: José Callejón became the 2011-12 season’s third signing when it was announced that Madrid and Espanyol had come to an agreement to sell José back to Madrid for €4 million (one million less than the buyback option).  He had left Castilla to join Espanyol in 2008 for €1.2 million, after scoring 21 goals for Castilla in the 2007-08 season.  His contract is for five years.  And for those of you who don’t know, José has a twin brother, Juanmi, who is also a Madrid canterano.  At present, he plays for Córdoba.

Back when his hair was normal…

During his farewell press conference, Callejón said, “I’m happy because I’m going to the best club in the world.  This is not an opportunity that you can let escape.  My only option is to return to Madrid to stay, and I’m going with hope and a desire to work, and it will be up to the míster to decide.  I like Madrid’s philosophy of recovering players from the cantera.”

His talent aside, I do like this signing because José is a canterano and is also Spanish, and Madrid needs that at the moment, given the almost certain departures of Peter Lion and Sergio Canales and the UEFA stipulation that a team must have at least eight “national products.”  This might also be part of the reason why we’ll see David Mateos back as well, as he’s set to return from his loan spell to AEK Athens (where he also won the domestic cup).  Plus, José is already a character on Crackòvia!

Training young Spartans: Álvaro Arbeloa was quite happy about Callejón’s return, which he was asked about during the presentation of his summer campus yesterday afternoon.  In the La Foresta municipal center, he said, “I’m really happy to have him with us.  I coincided with him in the cantera.  It’s very important for me, as a canterano, to have canteranos there.  He’s had a fantastic season and I’m sure that he’ll contribute a lot.”

Álvaro also agreed with Mou’s message regarding fair play and the fight against racism: “we don’t presume to be the standard in the fight against racism or for fair play.  There’s another organization that does it, but they’ve been unmasked.  We hope that next season, there won’t be different criteria and the same ones will be used to measure everyone.”  You tell them Álvaro!!

The campus is for children between the ages of six and 14, and will take place in July.

It’s for “work”:  Iker and Sara flew off to Johannesburg, South Africa yesterday, along with a team from Telecinco (the word “work” is in quotations because I don’t believe constantly flipping your hair around while a camera films you can be considered work, when you’re supposed to be talking about sports).  Telecinco is producing a special about La Roja to coincide with the first anniversary of their World Cup victory, and they’ve “hired” Iker to be part of this report, which will be filmed this week in South Africa (he probably would have tagged along anyway out of his free will).  Knowing Telecinco, they are probably going to make Iker and Sara repeat The Kiss, and then air it endlessly on their insufferable gossip shows, as they really know how to commercialize the relationship their reporter has with the captain of the Spanish national team.  Anyway, the special is called “The day when we lived a dream” (El día que vivimos un sueño), and will take a look back at the final against the Netherlands, with new footage, and visit some of the sites that were so important to the Spanish national team in their quest for World Cup success.

No beaches yet: our three Portuguese players won’t really get to start their summer vacations until after the Portugal-Norway Euro qualifier on June 4 in Lisbon, as all three – Pepe, Cristiano and Ricky Carvalho – have been called up for it.  Meanwhile, Cris spent the first few days of his break in Madeira, hanging out with his family, his girlfriend and his mini me.  Cris definitely dressed Cristiano Jr., because he’s in designer gear head to toe.  I wonder if Cris is carrying any baby paraphernalia around in that backpack?  And note to Isabella: your future husband is adorable!

FORTY: Speaking of Cris, here’s a summary of his pichichi and Golden Boot-winning 40 Liga goals, courtesy of AS.  There’s a nice graphic from Marca here as well.

How will he celebrate a goal: Sami Khedira, in an interview with the German Football Federation (I’m translating from the Spanish here, so if any of you German speakers want to provide a better translation, feel free) spoke about Sahin, scoring and not being a superstar.  Sami says that he’s not bothered by the competition from Nuri Sahin, and that he’s a great guy and a wonderful footballer, so it’s good for Madrid to have someone of his quality.  He also reveals that in the beginning of the season, when he didn’t understand a single word and did not know what the coach wanted of him, Rafa van der Vaart helped him a lot, as he spoke German, and the club did their part as well, by helping him to open a bank account, find a house, take care of paperwork, find a good restaurant… The result is that he feels comfortable in Madrid, where he says life is more relaxed than in Germany, because “fortunately I’m not Cristiano, and although I sign autographs and photos, I don’t feel harassed.”  Sami also says he hopes to score a goal next year (please let him dance with Mesut to celebrate).

Neighbors: meanwhile, Mesut Özil told Kicker that the team is “a small family.  We send each other text messages on our days off to wish each other fun times with our families…”  As for living in Spain, he says, “the culture is different, dinner is at 10 o’clock.  And the concept of discipline is different as well.  In Germany, my furniture took two weeks to arrive, in Spain, two months” (maybe that’s why Benz lived in a house with no furniture?).  And in response to if he’s changed, Mesut responds, “I’m the same person, I have the same friends.  I have the support of all the players, especially Sergio Ramos, who is my neighbor.”  I guess that means Sergio has finally moved to La Finca?

Too bad no online peñas are allowed: the Peña Ramón Mendoza celebrated their XXIII anniversary yesterday, with special guests Pepe and Antonio Adán.  Also present were three Castilla players – Juanfran and the Fernández brothers – and former Castilla player, Miguel Torres.  Pepe and Adán thanked all the madridistas for their tireless support throughout the season, saying they are very proud of their fans, and that there will be lots of joy next season.  The highlight of the event came when the peña‘s president announced, in the presence of Raúl’s parents Pedro and Marisa, a tribute to their son to take place in the winter.

I’ll believe it when Xabi gives his seal of approval: tomorrow, the Santiago Bernabéu will open up a new restaurant.  The Zen Market promises to be the best Asian restaurant in Europe, and takes up a 2,000 square meter spot in the stadium, with space for 250 diners, a salon with seating for up to 400 people and three bars.  They will also provide catering for the 10 palcos they own during game days.

News briefs: Eze Garay is the only madridista on Argentina’s list for the friendlies on June 1 and June 5 against Poland and Nigeria, as Sergio Batista is counting on his “B list.”  Guti spent yesterday playing in Real Madrid Foundation’s charity golf tournament.  And Polish media sources are saying that Jerzy Dudek has an offer from the Seattle Sounders of the MLS.

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40 Comments leave one →
  1. May 24, 2011 12:31

    “the word “work” is in quotations because I don’t believe constantly flipping your hair around while a camera films you can be considered work” – oh, Una. You crack me up.

    Well, the upside to having the season over is that you won’t have to write up ICYMIs every weekend. I bet it’ll free up a lot of your time.

    And what does peña mean, Una? I tried Google Translate, and I’m not sure what word it fits. And what do you mean by “Too bad no online peñas are allowed”?

    • May 24, 2011 16:02

      It’s like an official fan group – they’re registered with the club and everything, and have some perks.

      • May 24, 2011 16:55

        Or they are unofficial and registered here, at Una’s blog, and call themselves the Serhio Ramo Real Madri Playa Pena;-)))))

  2. Whiskey permalink
    May 24, 2011 12:34

    I am already having withdrawal – its going to be a long summer. So Una ANY bits and pieces are welcome. Have to admit I have mixed feelings about Calléjon’s return – as a Madridista I am happy to see him back at the club [and I actually don’t mind “the hair” – am waiting to see what Marcelo does with it!] but I have always had a soft spot for Espanyol and am sad to see them continually lose their players. And good on Alvaro for his comments!

    Given its the end of the season I wanted to also thank you Una for all the work you do to make this blog (and your other one) so great – they are well written, entertaining, insightful and I look always look forward to them. Looking forward to next season when hopefully there will be more trophies to celebrate – and to drop 🙂

  3. May 24, 2011 12:36

    “The word “work” is in quotations because I don’t believe constantly flipping your hair around while a camera films you can be considered work” – bwahahahah you said it Una!!!

  4. Milleca permalink
    May 24, 2011 12:55

    It’s really nice to see someone from Castilla going back to us! And Alvaro, mmhmmm.

    Also Cristiano with his son is all sorts of adorable.

    And LOL Una, I have a serious question. Why do you hate Sara so much? Is hate the right word…or? I’m just curious. Your reactions/side comments are funny.

    Thank you for this post!

    • May 24, 2011 16:03

      I don’t mind Sara, I just don’t think she’s that great of a reporter/presenter (she’s overrated), and I really don’t like Telecinco.

      • maddy permalink
        May 24, 2011 16:45

        i agree with your sentiments about sara. she’s keeps shooting herself in the foot with baseless comments about iker’s team. thats not what a supportive girlfriend does, neither a credible sports reporter. the ‘how did you muck this up’ (if thats really what she said) after the swiss loss at the world cup was just horrendous. be professional..

        • May 24, 2011 23:37

          I don’t like her as a reporter ( I like her name 🙂 ) but she did not say ‘ how did you muck this up’ thats something that the English press made up.
          Even though I didn’t warm up to her, I can’t judge her as a girlfriend because thats something personal and I hate to admit it but Iker seems happy with her…

        • maddy permalink
          May 25, 2011 15:16

          its not my place to judge her as a girlfriend. but i think she should learn to keep some of her baseless comments to herself, especially when she knows they will cause a ruckus within the team. also, she never seems to smile.. its not very becoming..

          i kind of figured she didnt say ‘how did you muck this up”. but what did she actually say?

      • Milleca permalink
        May 25, 2011 04:16

        Oh okay, I’m not from Spain so I can’t really say how she is because I don’t watch her too, even in YT.

        Although on that note, I kind of hate Telecinco too. They remind me of our local TV networks. Haha.

        Thanks for answering!

  5. May 24, 2011 13:09

    Cr Jr’s cheeks…. SO cute!!

    He looks so much like his Daddy 🙂

  6. Lorelei permalink
    May 24, 2011 13:15

    Leave it to Cris to have the most adorable, yet worst-dressed baby in town. But really, he’s adorable!

  7. Chloe permalink
    May 24, 2011 13:52

    Cris Jr.!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I love what little Cris is wearing!
    Look at his puffy cheeks!
    The cap!!!
    The denim!!!
    THE FASHUN!!!

  8. georgia permalink
    May 24, 2011 14:51

    would you be able to tell me the link to the post game interview?
    thanks 🙂

  9. Gillian permalink
    May 24, 2011 14:54

    Love the pics from the Almeria game! Also, the thought of Rafa helping Sami acclimate at the beginning of the season makes me “awwwwwww”

  10. Kristine permalink
    May 24, 2011 15:07

    Thank you for the fabulous season recaps Una! This is the first place I visit in the morning when I wake up. You deserve some sort of award!

    I’m going to miss the games, but BEACH season is almost here! Half naked ballers on the beach will take away the sting.

    Oh, and Cris’s son is adorable!

  11. superfan permalink
    May 24, 2011 15:44

    Cris Jr. is adorable. Omgggg. I want to squish his cheeks. Cris and his son are too cute for words. 😀

    First week of off season and I am desperate for news already. So a huge huge thank you to you Una for this bits and pieces post. Transfer rumors are going to make us all crazy so your posts would be refreshing. 🙂

  12. Sarah, Madrid permalink
    May 24, 2011 16:32

    Cris JR is so adorable, cheeks cheeks! I am liking the idea of Callejon coming back just because he is a cantera, but I know he needs to work 300% better to make it to the starting 11 because for now it looks like he is making up for numbers and I am not liking it. I hope am wrong!
    ahhh, the transfer season still beginning, I am going crazy already as we are linked to alot of stars on the market, still in May and we already linked to: Aguero, Tevez, Ibra, Coentroa. Long summer ahead, is it only me who is already happy with what we have! I dont think we need any other new signing, if we need players, can we just go and shop in Castilla :(.

  13. Nurul permalink
    May 24, 2011 16:48

    ” There’s another organization that does it, but they’ve been unmasked.”

    I love this man. That will be all.

    • DebS permalink
      May 25, 2011 03:13

      That was a brilliant comment, wasn’t it?

      I am glad that Mou didn’t mince words when talking about the whole racism BS. Hopefully, now it makes it easier for the players to denounce it as well and not just be “happy” for Busquets. Well done to Arbeloa for stepping up to the plate.

      On a side note, I just read an article where a Chicago Bulls player (basketball) was fined by the National Basketball Association for a anti-gay slur against a fan. Kobe Bryant was also punished for making a similar comment. Both of these happened recently. THAT UEFA is how a reputable sports organization backs up their zero-tolerance campaign against discrimination in the NBA. Oh…and the players manned up and apologized publicly. *cough cough Busquets*

  14. maddy permalink
    May 24, 2011 16:51

    “Mou waving and patting his heart at the fans who kept chanting his name.”

    this was one of the most beautiful moments in the game. in the fall out from the clasicos, everyone on the outside was claiming that mourinho was the worst thing to happen to madrid. but whereever he goes (chelsea, inter, and now madrid), the players LOVE him, the fans LOVE him.

    cris junior is beyond adorable. this is the first pic of seen of him with his dad. its so heartwarming..

    i love that mateos is back. he’s my favourite canterano (and the best looking, in my opinion.)

    una, i miss them too!!! i’ll be checking your blog everyday for ANY sort of news of them, and bits and pieces of ANYTHING madrid related..

  15. May 24, 2011 16:57

    Oh, I miss the season already as well!

    Lots of adorable news (and by adorable I do not mean Iker travelling with Sara..;-), the most adorable of all is the view of Cristiano and his son. What a moon-pie Cris Jr is!

  16. May 24, 2011 18:40

    – “I hope you’re not tired of seeing moments from this game, because these moments have to last us until the end of July!”
    Nope, I won’t be tired ever of seeing them dancing together!

    – “Sami also says he hopes to score a goal next year (please let him dance with Mesut to celebrate).”
    I want Sami goal, too! He will get his next season!

    – “I have the support of all the players, especially Sergio Ramos, who is my neighbor.”
    LOL, no wonder Mesut is getting tanner and tanner! Ramos is his neighbor! They probably spend their free time together in tanning bed.

  17. LeeLee14 permalink
    May 24, 2011 20:31

    Great post! Una do you know how long Iker is going to be in Joburg for because I really want to exercise my stalking abilities…:)

    • May 25, 2011 14:59

      Well, he has to be back in Madrid on May 31 for the national team, so not too long.

  18. Ellen permalink
    May 24, 2011 22:04

    Lovely round-up… but ngl, I almost fell over (from lying down) when I read the bit about Jerzy maybe getting an offer from the Sounders. NO NO NO NO NO NO NO. Anywhere in MLS but there, anywhere!

    However, Seattle seems to be saying that they haven’t offered him a contract. They’re definitely looking for a keeper though.

  19. gaelle permalink
    May 24, 2011 22:36

    la finca should be renamed Real Madrid north quaters or something cuz it seems like the entire team lives there!!!

  20. May 24, 2011 23:45

    Cris Jr is cute 🙂
    I want the new season to start, its too much waiting. We will be waiting for preseason friendlies for some time too 😦

  21. black widow permalink
    May 25, 2011 02:14

    as others have already said before me: the word “work” is in quotations because I don’t believe constantly flipping your hair around while a camera films you can be considered work, when you’re supposed to be talking about sports una, i love you. took the words right out of my mouth. she’s the least journalistic journalist i’ve ever encountered (and i have a graduate degree in journalism!) … ridiculous and unprofessional. i am so very tired of her!

    moving on …

    mou tapping his heart was adorable. how lucky we are to have this fierce man as our leader! never mind what the opponents and the officials say, the club and the fans love him, and that’s all that matters. it’s really lovely to see him acknowledge the support like that, he seems very humbled by it.

    on a shallow note … arbeloa is gorgeous. i knew this already, of course, but every so often, i’m reminded of it again. if the football career doesn’t work out, he could always model!

  22. kai permalink
    May 25, 2011 03:42

    thank you so much Una..and i’m really happy to know that two of my fave players are neighbors now..Mesut and Sergio..yey! super thanks for the post!

  23. DebS permalink
    May 25, 2011 04:38

    Una, I miss them too. I know they need a physical & mental break after this year but…I’m ready for next season. I so look forward to your updates to help me through the break!

    1. Love how Cris is so amused by Manu and the dancing is a big improvement over some of the earlier season celebrations. :p Although based on Karanka’s post game comments about Manu makes it sound like he won’t be back. :{
    2. I looked forward to hearing the Jose Mourinho chant during each game. I didn’t hear it during the last match but thankfully there was a post showing the after game chants. What a great gesture by the fans & Mou in response.
    3. It’s good to see Madrid using more canteros. If I remember correctly, Callejón was one of the players that gave Madrid problems when we played Espanyol. Mou definitely took notice. Good to see.
    4. I laughed at Arbeloa’s expression in that pic. He doesn’t look to happy, does he? 😀
    5. Cris Jr. is SO adorable and I totally see the resemblance to papa. But who decided to put his hat on backward?! lol
    6. Una thank you, thank you, thank you for the pics of Cris goals. Weird maybe but I really like this type of info. It makes it even more apparent the level of teamwork and Cris’ abilities needed when scoring those goals. But I suggest no one reads the comment section of the article on Marca. Lots of haters trying to minimize his award because some were scored on PK’s and of course the “gift goal” from Pepe. Guess they forgot that Messi scored off PK’s too. But I guess no matter how many goals he scored there would be those that found fault or some excuse why Messi didn’t win it. smh
    7. Mesut’s comments about the guys being a family, etc. is a real (no pun intended 😉 testament to what Mou has brought to the team as well as the guys on the team. Hearing things like this from the players makes it even more impressive. ❤

  24. Cammy permalink
    May 25, 2011 06:35

    I miss them too:(

    Well we have the USA vs Spain match in a couple of weeks. I just bought my tickets for the Real vs LA Galaxy, so that is something to look forward to but otherwise it’s a boring summer without football.

  25. IsaBella permalink
    May 25, 2011 12:51

    Thank you for the report about Alvaro Una! 🙂 I’ve seen Iker’s pic on Facebook from the Johannesburg stadium and I was wondering what he was doing there….
    “I guess that means Sergio has finally moved to La Finca?” – but doesn’t he still own the house in La Moraleja? I thought that Mesut lived there as well….

  26. Messilona10 permalink
    May 26, 2011 00:10

    Come on people.. What do you have to miss from a bunch of fools who could not win La Liga? They lost 5-0 to FC Barcelona in what suppose to be Jose Mourinho’s worst defeat in his managerial career. Jose Mourinho’s 9 years home record was broken while he is in Real Madrid. Real Madrid got eliminated from the Champions League by FC Barcelona with a brace of Lionel Messi..

    When will you realize that Cristiano Ronaldo, Ozil and Kaka are all flops?

    • Beezy permalink
      May 27, 2011 13:09

      How can you say that they are flops when they have been lauded by millions all around the world for being some of the best?
      And as for their losses, well, you win some, you lose some. Although this team is slowly improving and I believe, on their way to winning all. There are many things we love about this club, like you do with yours. We Madridistas have chosen to support them even when they’re having a tough time, and we say “hasta el final, vamos real” for that very reason.
      I hope you learn to respect them because even though you do not support them, they are players that people look up to and they deserve it. Show some respect at the very least.

    • Maria permalink
      May 27, 2011 15:44

      If you are a Barca fan why did you waste your time by coming to a REAL MADRID fan site ?
      And wasting your words with your Barca crap

    • DebS permalink
      May 28, 2011 03:15

      Fellow Madridistas,

      Clearly this poster is just a troll. Because if they truly knew anything about football they would not be making these ignorant comments. As you rightly said Beezy Ozi & CR7 have been praised by professionals footballers, commentators, etc. around the world, even by a commentator who is a HUGE fan of Messi. And clearly they don’t know that CR7 won both the Pichichi AND the Golden Boot. So, to call these guys “flops” only proves the poster’s ignorance. They also seem to forget that Messi scored his brace and Barca is now in the final of the CL only as a result of Barca’s excellent acting abilities.

      So…yeah…best to just ignore the trolls. Funny how it’s only the Barca supporters that troll this site isn’t it? Doesn’t say a whole lot for them, does it?

  27. Beezy permalink
    May 27, 2011 08:43

    I’m really sad that it does look like Sergio Canales and Pedro Leon are leaving. I mean idk much abt Leon but Sergio C, i think, fits right in with them, just that he hasn’t really been given a chance to shine. Which is not exactly a single person’s fault, exactly, since RM is an all-star team and he still is very young.
    I do hope that they decide to keep him, though. I’m really really praying because I see a brilliant future for him in Madrid.
    And if they decide to let him go, I hope that eventually he does return. Maybe after a year! Or sooner 😦
    Also, I hope to see him in the NT and being given more opportunities to showcase his abilities. He’s one of the two younger ones I follow – him and de Gea. I think some sports writers have dubbed them (separately, though) the future of spanish football.

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