Interview: Emilio Butragueño

It is sixteen years to the day since Emilio Butragueño left Real Madrid as a player. The legendary Real Madrid footballer talked about his last day on the team and also about the club in an interview.

Emilio Butragueño
Emilio Butragueño at the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium

"The morning of my last day, I went to the stadium to check everyhting was fine. We had lunch, I had a nap and we prepared for the match; the usual stuff. It turned out great. We defeated Roma 4-0 and I played a part in all the goals. We had a good team the day I left the team".

"Football, and Real Madrid in particular, has made me what I am and given me everything that I have. This is where I spent my entire professional career, between 18 and 32 years of age. People know me because of Real Madrid and I am indebted to the club for things turning out rather well throughout my life. I owe the club everything. I already knew before retirement that I wanted to return to football, or more specifically, to Real Madrid. I especially wanted to be an executive. I didn't want to be near the pitch. I wanted to have an office".

"As a footballer I thought there was no better place to play at than Real Madrid, and I now believe it would be hard for me to find a better place to work at than the club. Every time I come here I don't feel I'm entering club or an office; I rather feel I'm coming home. This is my home. It's part of my life. If you ask me where my home is I'd answer it's with my family, but I'd also tell you it is at the stadium. I don't work at a company; I work at home".

"The club has become more professional as football has evolved. The Marketing Department did not exist when I joined the team. It now has 40 people on its staff and generates a third of the club's budget. When I first arrived there wasn't even a Communications Department. That gives you an idea of how things have changed. Real Madrid have had to adapt to circumstances in order to get the most out of its resources and continue competing".

"It is our duty to adapt to the times and still be competitive in order to aspire to be the best in the world. In order to do that we need resources to strengthen the team, sign great players and keep winning".

"In what regards the structure of the club and its financial situation, I must say Florentino Perez is a very successful businessman. Our Club Members can relax. You win and lose in football, but we currently have an extraordinary team and, with a little luck, we could have a great run next season".

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