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a video, a graphic, an interview & more

May 31, 2011

Ni hao: to promote Madrid’s 2011 China Tour, several of our players (starting at the 1:15 mark) star in this video, and even speak a bit of Chinese!  Xabi, Kaká and Mou tried out their language skills, while Cristiano also appears, but only speaking in English.

Xabi says, “hello Guangzhou.  See you in Aug. 3” while Kaká says, “hello Tianjin.  See you on Aug. 5” and Mou says “hello China, see you in August.”  And Cris finishes things off with “two big games you can’t miss.”

To compare, here’s Arsenal’s video for their own China tour.  The subtitles make fun of the problems the team has in pronouncing certain characters.  It would have been fun if Madrid’s players had tried to say something more than “hello”!

4,802 minutes for Iker: here’s a graphic from Marca showing the number of games, minutes and goals scored/allowed by each of the players used by José Mourinho in the 2010-11 season.  It also shows the number of games played in each competition, the number of wins/losses/ties and the number of goals scored for and against.

Cantera news: two more of our canteranos were called up (at the last minute) for the U-19 team, which is already in Switzerland for the Elite Round of the U-19 Euro.  The two special ones were Álex Fernández and Juvenil A’s Rubén Sobrino, who join Dani Pacheco, Dani Carvajal, Pablo Sarabia and MFC Álvaro Borja Morata Martín.  The RFEF and Madrid had agreed not to call up Álex, but since Castilla is now out of the playoffs, Julen Lopetegui had no obstacles left so Álex is now in Switzerland.

I love this team: more lovely gestures from our players – Antonio Adán took part in a charity game between Tomelloso and a team made up of Liga players to benefit Lorca and Japan.

Welcome back?  On the subject of canteranos, David Mateos is back in Madrid and spoke with Marca.  Highlights from the interview:

on his experience in Greece: it was great.  I would recommend it to everyone if they want to experience another type of football and another type of culture.  I learned a lot.  I really didn’t have much experience with professional football, not counting those two games with Madrid.  You learn a lot, whether you want to or not, while playing continuously over five months.  I also learned how to survive, because I had never left my parents’ home, and another language, English.  I’ve matured a lot, both in terms of football and on a personal level.

on watching the clásicos in Greece: I had an awful time because all my teammates supported Barça.  We made bets and we followed each game intensely.  I watched the Copa del Rey final at home.  When Cristiano scored, I jumped up and screamed.  Luckily, there was only one other person in the building, because if not, I’m sure I would have had problems.

on winning the Copa del Rey and the Greek Cup: I won the Copa del Rey because I played in one game.  And in Greece, my first game was in the quarterfinals of the Cup.  We suffered and we passed through to the next round, but I never thought I would win a title.  In the final, we were up 2-0 and the fans were already congregating around the field to jump in, and when we scored the third, they invaded the field and tried to take our shirts and shorts.  The game had to be stopped with seven minutes left, but it was never re-started.

on his return to Madrid: my intention is to stay.  I will work hard during the pre-season to carve out a spot for myself.  You have to win a spot; one can’t be promised to you.  With hard work every day, and having the best in the world at your side, why can’t I work my way to a starting spot?

on Mourinho: when I left, he told me that it would be a great experience for me, that I needed to play and to learn about professional football.  Last summer, I was practically out of Madrid, but the míster didn’t have central defenders and so he took me to Alicante (to play Hércules in a pre-season friendly) and gave me the opportunity to play in the second half.  I responded well and he was satisfied with my performance.  Then he gave me some minutes in the Trofeo Santiago Bernabéu and I showed him my football.  Everything I have now is thanks to him.

(David also told AS that it’s true that one time Mourinho asked Antonio Adán about him: “Adán told me that he asked about me, if I was playing, how I was.  I thank him for it and I want to show him that he’s right to have confidence in me.”)

on his idol: I’ve always looked up to Fernando Hierro.  People tell me that I have things in common with him.  But he’s one of the greats and I have a lot of catching up to do.

International update:

Spain: the boys of La Roja (Iker, Sergio, Xabi, Álvaro and Raúl) met up today in Madrid to start their concentración with the Spanish national team.  They’ll play two friendlies in the U.S. (June 4) and Venezuela (June 7).

Germany: Germany beat Uruguay 2-1 in a friendly last weekend, and Mesut started the game.  Germany will take on Austria on Friday in a Euro 2012 qualifier, and Sami Khedira hopes to be match-ready by that game, after training yesterday.  Germany will also play Azerbaijan in a qualifier on June 7.

Turkey: Turkey, which is in the same group as Germany in Euro 2012 qualifying, plays Belgium on June 3.

Portugal: Portugal plays Norway on June 4 in a Euro 2012 qualifier.  Ricardo Carvalho had to leave Portugal’s training session yesterday after suffering a blow due to a collision with one of his teammates.

Argentina: the list of players called up for the Copa América will be released today.  Eze Garay, Pipita Higuaín and Ángel di María are all expected to be on it.

France: Karim Benzema showed off a lot of skin during training with France.  They’ll play Belarus in a Euro 2012 qualifier on June 3.

Don’t miss it: RMTV will air a special on the Copa del Rey this Wednesday at 21h.  The 70-minute program is called “En el corazón de la Copa” (In the heart of the Cup) and it has never seen before footage of the team in Valencia before and after the game, as well as during the celebrations.

Don’t miss it II:  according to AS, the club will present the new signings (Callejón, Sahin and Altintop) together at the Bernabéu to the fans before Madrid starts their summer tour on July 12.

22 Comments leave one →
  1. zuneybunny permalink
    May 31, 2011 14:22

    I will be in TianJian for that friendly in august! I am so EXCITED!! I just hope they field their best players

    • May 31, 2011 19:57

      Me too! I can’t wait–do you know where/when tickets will be on sale? I read somewhere mid-July, but I can’t read much Chinese…

  2. Sarah, Madrid permalink
    May 31, 2011 14:42

    I can’t wait for the program <3! Thank you Una for keeping us updated with RM news, I dont know how would I survive the 2 months of no RM!:(.

    I dont know why!, but Jose, Kaka and Xabi made me want learn chinese, Yum!

    I actually miss Mateos, he is so adorable, his celebration and aww I feel bad that his teammates are Barc supporters, I can't imagine how he felt! I didnt know he won the Greek cup with his club, it is apparently Madridsta Copa' year with Raul and Guti winning too.

  3. May 31, 2011 14:58

    I LOVE THAT VID!! Even if I couldn’t understand a word of what is being said.

    LOL on Cris’s eye twitching as if he was just dying to wink at the end of his speech.

  4. Stella permalink
    May 31, 2011 16:04

    Is this my lucky day or what: AARON RAMSEY!!!!!!!!!, Özil and half naked Benze Benze Benzema in the same post. Like it a lot!

  5. bbBenz permalink
    May 31, 2011 16:52


  6. IsaBella permalink
    May 31, 2011 17:21

    Thank you Una, for this lovely update! 🙂

  7. Sr421 permalink
    May 31, 2011 20:05

    I saw them in Beijing in 2005 on their last China trip, it was fun but the people at the game were crazy and rude (to fellow spectators)…6 years later, manners in China have not improved. While I am glad they are finally on the same side of the world as I am, I’m kinda afraid to go to these games for the sheer fear of getting trampled…:(

    Out of the three, I think Mou spoke his line the best…and lol @ Ronnie’s suppressed wink. 😛

  8. Sr421 permalink
    May 31, 2011 20:08

    I like the Arsenal video much better, they’re all trying so hard!! Wenger looks quite constipated trying to speak Chinese, haha!! C’mon Madrid, make more fun videos!!! They should’ve made Granero say something, his brother lives in China and I’m sure has taught him some words. 😉

  9. May 31, 2011 22:14

    disappointed that I chose to take summer classes instead of the summer off to travel (or visit relatives in China for example!). but at least work+classes=money to be saved up for world cup 2014! =D thanks, Una for the update!

  10. Gina permalink
    May 31, 2011 23:57

    Excellet post! Just wondering though, if those are the new kits Cris and Kaka have on… Why is Cris back to 9???

    • June 1, 2011 10:34

      No, these pictures are from the 2009-10 season.

      • Gina permalink
        June 1, 2011 18:24

        Oh okay, thanks for the clarification, the gold trim confused me.

  11. Emtenan permalink
    June 1, 2011 01:51

    Una thanks for what you are doing in this great blog ❤

    can't wait for next season

    by the way I LOOOOVED BENZY topless photos =)

  12. Gillian permalink
    June 1, 2011 02:02

    Aw, Bambi.


  13. black widow permalink
    June 1, 2011 04:02

    the funniest thing in both those videos was arsene wenger speaking chinese — i keep picturing his puppet self from special1 TV! heh.

    • June 1, 2011 19:48

      I’m glad to know that I’m not the only one who does that every time!!

  14. June 1, 2011 15:41

    They should’ve made one like the Arsenal boys did! They sound really funny speaking Chinese!

  15. Happy permalink
    June 1, 2011 17:31

    I miss Hierro, good luck, Mateos, hope you could stay long in Madrid.

  16. Happy permalink
    June 1, 2011 17:34

    I want to see Madrid in China again!!!! However, Pipita will be missing, so sad, it must be amazing to see Mou and our lovely team so close!!!!

  17. June 2, 2011 03:12

    Real’s video paled in comparison with Arsenal’s. I was LMAO-ing so hard. Pepe, Manu, and Marcelo should do their own promotional vid, I think that would be awesome. Still, thumbs up for Xabi, Kaka and Mou’s chinese ^_______________________^

    China is only a few hours away from my country, if only they would visit other asian countries as well T.T

  18. jean permalink
    June 3, 2011 00:31

    I cant wait to see them there.I know that they will make a lot of people happy:)
    Awww Cris Never change lol:)
    Mou wanted to laugh but they all did a gd job

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