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Raúl Albiol & Alicia Roig at GQ España

July 22, 2011

I forgot all about this one… sorry about that!  But to be honest, you weren’t missing much.

As stated previously, there was a short interview with Raúl Albiol in the July/August edition of GQ España, accompanied by pictures of Raúl and his wife-to-be Alicia Roig (they weren’t married yet when the photo session took place).  It’s not the best interview, because it’s short and focuses too much on football; based on the pictures, I had expected it to be more about him and Alicia.  And despite the video that we saw, there’s only one more picture included with the article; the other one is this one that’s on the left.  That means that we don’t get to see any more of Raúl in his tight, tight pants.

In Raúl Albiol’s (Villamarchante, Valencia, 1985) house, “football always came first.”  His father played for Sabadell, Vizcaya “and other teams in the second B and third divisions, when those divisions were strong.”  His brother Miguel played for Rayo Vallecano and now plays for Real Murcia.  “My mother got used to following my father around the fields in Spain, and after that came the children kicking a ball around and breaking everything.  I think that she ended up liking football,” he jokes.  Despite his imposing 1.87m height and his athletic physique, Albiol is an affable guy.  He’s sincere, he laughs a lot and he gets animated when the conversation turns to football.  His life has unfolded on benches, in locker rooms and on buses, and of course, on those green fields where football is played.

He began his career in the cantera of Valencia, the club he loved, where he won a Liga, a Copa del Rey and a UEFA cup.  He caught the attention of scouts from the center of the defense, and in 2008, he debuted with the Spanish national team.  That summer he would become a European champion con la roja and become part of history as a member of the team that won the first trophy for the national team.

After one more season in Valencia, he joined Real Madrid in 2009 as a fundamental piece of the schematic designed by Pellegrini.  Although the club didn’t win any titles that year, in July 2010, he won what is probably the most sought after prize by footballers: the World Cup.

After a complicated season for los merengues and without any commitments to the national team, Raúl Albiol will use his free summer to make another of his dreams come true: marry his girlfriend and the mother of his two daughters, Alicia Roig.  This 24-year-old, who’s from Valencia like he is, stole his heart in 2007 after they met in a gym in the city of Valencia.  “I had had a horrible day, my car had been stolen [or just misplaced?] that morning,” Raúl remembers.  “I decided to accompany a friend to the gym and he presented me to Alicia, who was working in the reception.”  She says she was attracted to “his humility, his naturalness… and well, how handsome he was.”

When we did this interview, in April, an air of mystery surrounded the wedding, although we were able to find out that it would take place on June 17 in the Palau de les Arts in Valencia and that the groom would be wearing a suit from English firm Hackett.

Four years together and two daughters.  Are you getting married now so that your house can get some furniture?

In reality, it’s for the bachelor party (laughs).  Jokes aside, it’s that this is the first summer without any tournaments.

Are you going to invite the entire club?

Of course, they’re the people that you see each day at work.  It’s an issue of finding a place where everyone fits.

Your wedding has generated a lot of attention.  Do you prefer tabloid journalists or sports journalists?

The work of journalists is to get the most information possible, and I understand that in some occasions, they exceed certain limits.  I get along well with almost all sports media outlets, there is a lot of respect on both sides.

But one statement could end up hurting a footballer…

Perhaps we don’t always say what we think, but we do try and be sincere.  And if one day you have to say something, you say it.

Like when you complained that Mourinho favored the Portuguese players in the center of the defense.  Is anyone on Madrid guaranteed playing time?

It’s difficult for some players to stay on the bench because they’re very good and they show it each day on the field.  You can’t hide anything there.

Is Mourinho’s continuity on the bench assured despite the titles?

I think so, because he came for a four-year project.  At this point (April), we’re achieving our objectives, so I hope he continues.

(And then this happened.)

Did you play against the best Barça in history?

They’re a very strong team that has spent years developing an idea with a nucleus of great players and a great coach.  They make things difficult for us, but we like that.  Real Madrid is historically the best team in the world and this rivalry is good for us, since it demands more from us and shows us that we can change the dynamics of the last few years.

And is this the best Madrid team ever?

The best Real Madrid is still to come.  We’re a team with very young players and many of us only joined in the last two years.

Why is there such a difference between Madrid and Barça and the rest of the teams?

It’s an issue of budget.  Madrid and Barcelona invest in players that the rest of the teams can’t afford.  That’s why it’s so difficult for them to keep up with those two teams.

But this doesn’t happen in the Champions League…

Because you’re facing a champion.  A team that has won the league in its country is conscious of what’s at stake and comes out to play.

This is the other photo.  As I don’t own a scanner, it’s a photograph of the photograph.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. July 22, 2011 17:46

    thanks a lot for the translation and the photo, UM!!
    Aw if Raúl hadn’t accompanied his friend to the gym, he would never have met her. Too bad that they didn’t focus more on the couple in the interview, but I guess they would have had to do it with Vogue and not with GQ.

    And they only used 2 photos of the shoot, how disappointing. 😦 Does it say which photographer made the photos? Maybe he put some more up at his portfolio.

    He invited everyone! Too bad that most of them were too busy with vacation.

  2. amouria permalink
    July 23, 2011 09:15

    The following opinion may hurt some RM fans. Almost all my friends think that Albiol (by definition) is THE disaster of RM. They want to send a collective letter to Perez urging him to sell Albiol by any price. His presence in the field creates problems to the entire team. The young Faran (or any defender in his place including the outgoing Gago) is far much better than him.
    Well, I agree with them and wish that Albiol enjoy his life away from RM.
    Sorry guys! sorry Una 🙂

  3. TWKING permalink
    July 25, 2011 17:21

    Wow the last picture is hot!

    • Flora permalink
      April 7, 2012 04:01

      I totally agree! damn they are a Hot couple 😉

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