Legends: Francisco Gento


Paco Gento

Francisco Gento Lopez was born in Guarnizo, Cantabria, 21 October 1933. Son of a truck driver, left school at fourteen to help his father and take care of the cows they had on a small farm. As a child when he ran around Guarnizo, he dreamed of playing for Racing de Santander. Never thought his name would be a world football legend and he would be considered the best left midfielder of all time.

At that time he started playing football in the “Nueva Montaña” team, alternating with the athletic sport, where he purchased the speed that made him famous as a footballer. Shortly afterwards went to the “Astilleros”. In this team and with only fourteen years, scored nine times in a regional championship game, earning him a move to “Rayo Cantabria”. In 1953 amounted to Racing Santander, where his name became a national attraction. Alvaro Bustamante’s references, vice-president of Real Madrid who was born in the same province that Gento, served that season to sign for the white team for a period of five years. His early performances for the club were a disaster and a disappointment. Extremely fast and lacks a polished technique, raids ended, most of the time, outside the boundaries of the pitch, forgetting the ball that was left behind.

The arrival of Héctor Rial, a fine Argentine midfielder managed to temper the speed of Gento and make him profitable. Passes over 40 yards on the boot of the Cantabrian were finished in impressive gallops by the band in which he moved the ball a few yards and ran after him, overflowing with all that is put in front. Only stopped when he approached the line of lime which delimits the end of the field, then he took out his left leg and threw a measured center to the head of Di Stefano, Puskas or any other striker in that wonderful team.

Francisco Gento always noted for his impressive speed and prodigious dribbling that left sitting all his rivals. This made him the most dangerous left side of the moment. Not noted for his height, but became the world's fastest extreme. Nobody at the time had his speed. Also had a terrible and powerful shot on goal.


Francisco Gento's fame spreads far beyond Spanish. In Europe, Gento have been the only player in the world who played for fifteen consecutive years in the European Cup (Champions League), appearing in eight finals and achieving six titles, the last being perhaps the most emotional because he captained a young team, dubbed the "Ye-ye", composed by young Spanish players. This was the title that best taste left in Paco Gento.

Gento's track record  like player is really impressive. During the eighteen years he played for Real Madrid, Gento won: 6 European Cups, 12 League titles, 2 Spanish Cups and 1 Intercontinental Cup, among other awards.

He wore the Spanish jersey 44 times and has long held the record for games played with the national team. Among the amenities that football has given him is to have played in two world championships. In 1963 he was selected by FIFA to make the team "Rest of the World" which faced the English at Wembley Stadium in London.

After retiring as an active player became coach. He managed Castilla, Castellón, Palencia, Granada and several teams from the inferior categories of the Real Madrid. Today, Gento is "Real Madrid ambassador in Europe", traveling in front of the first team, along with his inseparable friend and Honorary President of Real Madrid, Alfredo DiStefano, on European soil.


Kaká: "Benzema's success depends on him"

Kaka is very clear and, with the naturalness with which face any issue of debate, has said that the one who holds the key to success in Real Madrid is himself Benzema: "It depends on him. In practice we see that he is a great player, technically amazing, no doubt a very good footballer and very technical, but there are times in matches which he is a bit out of the game and leaves us feeling that he could do a little more, which is what expected of him".

Kaka talked about Benzema

What could have sounded like an intended message or could generate some controversy, at the mouth of the Brazilian sounds like the quiet reflection of a teammate that is trying to help. These words and other 'pearls' as "Barcelona is not invincible as was demonstrated by the Betis" or "I appear in the key months in which football will decide if we win something or not in a season where we cannot lose" or "after a long injury, you need people to help you and Mourinho is doing with me from day one and now I'm getting minutes slowly" or "I'm very self-critical and I know I'm not at my best level yet, but I hope to be as soon as possible"... were said during the presentation of his new boots because Adidas wanted to celebrate the return of Brazilian star with its new 'adiPure'.

Asked about the controversy created over the immediate future of Mourinho, Kaka does not mince words: "Coach told us 'I am your coach and we will give everything to win, then we'll see what happens at the end of the season'. And one thing is the contract and other how campaigns are gone. But if we did not win a title, does not mean he cannot follow as coach.”

And he did not avoid talking about the need for a '9' for the Real Madrid template: "I'm a player and I do my job. If we need a '9' or not is something that the coach and the club will discuss. If Van Nistelrooy came, OK. He helped a lot and I learned a lot from him as long as he was here".

Cup Quarterfinals (2nd Leg): Players reactions


The captain of Real Madrid, Iker Casillas, said the team was able to play well the quarter-finals of Cup against Atletico Madrid: "We controlled the first minutes, then we find the goal and they came down. They tried but I think today was our best defensive game in 2011".

Iker Casillas

On the rumors that suggest that Mourinho could leave the club, Casillas is confident in the commitment of his coach: "The coach has his ways of being. He has his character and genius, but is a committed person. He is the number one in terms coaches, and that creates a lot of envy. Real Madrid and Mourinho made a good pairing. "

About Jorge Valdano "Jorge is a person who has a way of being and the coach too. In a relationship there may be differences, but seeking the good of Madrid" said the captain.


Arbeloa gave great importance to the white team's goal that settled the tie at the very beginning the meeting: "Our goal was key. We knew it was important to keep a clean sheet because we thought we could concede a goal given their strength in attack. Our strike hit them hard psychologically and they hardly had any chances to score since. I am sorry for Reyes' injury. It was an accident. I didn't mean to hurt him".

Alvaro Arbeloa

And evaluated the matches against Sevilla, the team's next opponents in the Spanish Cup: "Our games against Sevilla will be very important and we are very excited to play them. We have to try to win always because we can't afford to make mistakes. Our fixtures with Sevilla will be tough and difficult. We will have to fight hard to win. We are just two games away from a final and we are very excited about that".

About Mourinho: "We know what Mourinho thinks what's happening in the club. He has all our confidence and we think the club should support him to death. I hope so"

Spanish Cup: Quarterfinals (2nd Leg)


Real Madrid in the semifinals of Spanish Cup against Sevilla and Atletico so overcome by the derby as in the past eleven years. Twenty matches that have already built a complex that could renew the philosophical question of red and white boy: Daddy, why we always lose against Real Madrid?

The intrigue was short, until 22 minutes, goal by Cristiano Ronaldo. It was a purely theoretical intrigue, also must be said. In practice, the Real Madrid seemed to control the situation but they did not need to play too much. There was no sign of the feared attack from Atletico nor hell-fire nor the flame of a lighter. Some confidence it is necessary for football, a little, at least. Nothing. The Atletico only opportunity reached by a blunder of Casillas who smashed a punt against the pressure of Reyes and rebound nearly ended in a goal.

Iker Casillas save

Mourinho made changes to the eleven. He insisted on the substitution of Benzema (summer must be sold by weight), sat down Kaka and sent Marcelo to midfield, with Arbeloa behind. It was not bad for the team but also it was much better. No matter, to be honest. Madrid has superiority over Atletico that has little to do with tactical moves. It is a technical and moral mastery, an issue to be dealt with the patient lying on the couch.

Quique, meanwhile, opted for Elias, Tiago and Fran Merida. Neither said any revitalizing effect. The new one is just another worker; the Portuguese are to achieve his best and Merida still needs cooking time. Their meeting in the middle did not secure the ball nor offset the substitution of Juanfran.

The goal of the match was caught on the first serious deployment of Madrid, when his body appeared on the balcony of the enemy area. After two attempts, and spinning the same play; a center of Sergio Ramos and Cristiano Ronaldo appeared like the best nine of the world, maybe it is. It was an uncontested shot of which swell the net.

Shortly thereafter, Atletico admitted Reyes’ injury as a fatal omen, almost like a signfrom the gods: it would not be this time. Diego Costa was the relief of the injured player and completed a superb move for band that no one believed. The ball went around the goalkeeper Casillas without finding dog to bark

Real Madrid had no interest in anymore. It looked like they always kept something, a lot and no better than Cristiano to symbolize. After he scored a goal and several powerful runs attended Di Maria with the heel. If he had needed, would have more goals, runs, and heels.

In the second part, Fran Mérida was the one who was closest to the tie. He came with skill in the area but his shot was weak. That is obvious: no Kun, no fire. No hope.

Marcelo could be the victim of a penalty and an offside that would have ended in goal. But at this point the referee did not matter. There was not anything to discuss and maybe that's the worst thing you can say about Atletico: They did not discuss.


Stadium: Vicente Calderón
Attendance: 53,000
Goals: 0-1, m. 22: Cristiano Ronaldo


Higuain: "I hope to return before the end of the season”

Gonzalo Higuain came this morning to T4 Madrid-Barajas Airport from Chicago.Higuain was happy with how everything goes from passing through the surgery and hopes to be ready before the season ends.

“I just feel the pain of the leg that would not let me play and now the countdown begins to return. My body will mark my recovery, I'm fine, we are on good way and I'm confident I can come back before the season ends, but my body will mark the time" said the player. 

Gonzalo Higuain came back happy from Chicago

Pipita said that "our intent is that he continues, we are happy with him. We'll see what happens in June but our intention is that he continues", refers to Mourinho.

On the rumors of the return to the team of Ruud Van Nistelrooy, just to supply the Argentine while he was out, Higuain said: "It's a great player; I played with him, and really helped me a lot. I was able to win a league with him and was very supportive of mine, as everyone who was here. But in my case, I'm happy, and what I can do is to continue in this line"

Higuain expressed his joy for the support of his teammates during these months. "A lot of happiness, it was a great support. I'm in the process of rehabilitation and it is hard. The truth is that I am suffering because I love this sport, I love to play. The important thing now is to recover one hundred per cent. Health comes first. But it is all in good way which is important" he said.

Preview: Real Madrid vs Atletico

With a 3-1 lead heading into the second leg of the Copa del Rey quarterfinals against Atletico Madrid, Real Madrid hope to clinch a berth in the next round with a win at the Vicente Calderon. 

After the Copa draw paired Real Madrid with Atletico, surely the Whites did not expect to visit the Vicente Calderon with a 3-1 lead after the first leg of the tie. But even when holding the upper hand, the Madridistas have little room for error come kick-off on Thursday.

Similar to last week, Jose Mourinho gave no hints as to who he might line up in the starting eleven. What is certain, however, is that the same twenty players who suited up over the weekend in Almeria will be present and available against the red-whites. As it is difficult to guess the lineup, it does not seem wrong to bet on Gago and Benzema as news in the eleven. The Argentine to complete the rotations and the French for failing to declare the civil war; to delay it maybe.

Carvalho's return to central defense and Özil or Granero doubt in the playmaker position draw a picture that gives no respite to Di Maria who any day leaves the match with oxygen mask.

Quique Sanchez Flores has asked his men to "never give up. We need to play enough fury to turn the tie around." Atletico know coming back from a two goal deficit won't be easy, but their head coach has plenty of faith in his team and its fans. "We need to remain hopeful until the very last second," added Flores.

To accomplish the difficult task at hand, Atletico will be without Aguero, Mario Suarez and Jorge Pulido, all of whom are injured, as well as Antonio Lopez, who will serve his one-match ban. Koke, Borja Gonzalez and Alberto Perea have all been called up to fill in.

The question of red-whites focuses on the starter position of Tiago and Fran Mérida. The Portuguese is tired and Catalan pop. The rest are counted beans; a great keeper (De Gea), two notable extremes (Juanfran and Reyes) and a striker Forlan, who is lethal when sitting in physical and spiritual coincidence that fails to appear recently.

Reviewed the contenders and the players, it is the turn of the Vicente Calderon. After 19 derbies without a win, the fans of Atletico feels that the twenty needs to go up. And it should be there. The first objective is to exploit the initial attack to score a goal and then we'll see as the sun rises. Or the moon.

No matter what direction you look in, history favors Real Madrid. On one side, Atletico haven't defeated the Whites since 30 October 1999. On another, the Madridistas have won 10 of 15 Copa del Rey ties against their cross-town rival. But if that's not enough, Real Madrid have won all five ties after winning the first leg 3-1.


Mourinho: "I'm too old to send me errands in the newspapers"

Jose Mourinho appeared particularly tense at the meeting press the day before the derby against Atletico and left messages for everyone. On the issue of '9 ', said: "I am not the one to talk. I did it in preseason and in November when we all knew that Higuain missing a long time. And I have not said anything. That's what you speak and people who send messages. I'm too old for them to send me running errands in the newspapers. I'm a dinosaur for that. I choose myself and if I have questions, ask advice from my staff".

Jose Mourinho at press conference

He did not say whether he was referring to managers, although the reference to Jorge Valdano seemed clear, and when asked if he was tightening the rope with Florentino Perez said: "You see ghosts and films of suspense and terror".

And he left another message when asked about the fact that the team has started losing the last three games: "Several of our opponents have scored first, but we've never lost. We came back against Villarreal and Atletico, and we drew against Almeria without a striker and with Kaka on the pitch. It doesn't worry me to have to make comebacks in games. What would worry me would be a lack of reaction or character to do so".

Mourinho also denied that the team accused of fatigue and has given a warning to them: "Have you ever seen Real Madrid experience difficulties in the final minutes of a game? No. This is a side that dominates, and that scored to win and to draw against Almeria."

He also referred to the arbitration issue: "I do not question the honesty of referees, but some things they do are obvious and non-hipocrites don't have a problem pointing them out. The other day, I said the referee failed to award us two decisive penalties. I didn't mean it in an offensive or critical manner. I was just stating the obvious, what everyone saw. We would have had more chances to score and to win the game had he awarded them"

"There is no controversy here. He failed to award penalties. Controversy is when someone makes things up, not when he points out the obvious and unquestionable. Referees lack the humility to admit they make mistakes. Nevertheless, we conceded a goal offside against Atletico and I said the referee in that match was fantastic".

And on the complaint of the Technical Committee of Arbitrators to the Competition Committee on his words about Perez Lasa said: "I said that there is a rule for me and one for the rest. This history is repeating".

As for the cries of “Mourinho, drop dead” at the Calderon during Atletico vs Mallorca match, he said: "I cannot say much. If you can insult someone in public, why a couple of thousand people cannot scream as they do. This is a consequence. What shold I do? Do not go to the next match?

Interview: Cristiano Ronaldo (2)

Cristiano Ronaldo
You finish the first round with 23 goals. If you were able to maintain this incredible average, won the top scorer with 46 goals! It would be a historical record in the 79 contested leagues today. Are you motivated to beat the record of 38 goals (Hugo Sanchez and Zarra)?
I don’t play for record-breaking, I do not think about it. What I focus is on maintaining the level until the end of the season and help Real Madrid to win another title. I'm not obsessed with numbers, but obviously I'd like and it motivates me better this time.

But you do not pretend that we believe that, at the end of each day, not looking in the classification of Pichichi how you go and how they are rivals, and especially Messi.
I focus on continuing to work to the highest level to give my team the best. And if the end gets a prize like that, it is welcome. But between the top scorer and the Champions League, I have it clear.

So let's talk team. Has improved so much with Mourinho as it seems? Is it the Portuguese better coach than Pellegrini?
I hate to say whether it is better or worse. Everyone has their methods and we must respect everyone. I loved working with Pellegrini and Mourinho has left his mark in every country where it has worked. Their titles speak for themselves. I am excited to work with him, had long been looking forward to it.


Legends: Raymond Kopa


Raymond Kopa

Raymond Kopaszewski, world famous for Kopa, born in Noeux-Les-Mines, a smallmining town in northern France, on 13 October 1931. The young Frenchman, of Polish descent, early showed his passion for football.

Just behind the family home was the field of the village's team, which entered the age of ten. After completing his primary education goes to work in a mine where he also did his father. Abandoning coal pits after an accident in which lost the index finger of his left hand went to Angers, in which, under the guidance of coach Camille Cottin, Kopa is devoted fully. After two years in Angers walking the trails of the Second Division in 1951 signed for Stade de Reims for a lot of money at the time (1.8 million francs).

During the five years he was in French team, the fabulous French right midfielder rose to fame for his outstanding balance; in 158 games he scored 48 goals so he was elected the third best player in Europe, behind the legendary Matthews and Di Stefano.

His first contact with the white jersey of Real Madrid came to occasion of the farewell tribute to Luis Molowny. There began the particular affair between Real Madrid and French start. Curiously, his arrival in Madrid came just hours after the June 13, 1956, when the white set defeated Stade Reims at the final of the first edition of the European Cup. Attracted by the play of Kopa, Real Madrid signed him to the French.

Kopa had to adapt to a new position in the right hand, but the intelligence was one of his many qualities and had no problem putting on No. 7 on the shirt, to Alfredo di Stefano continued to be the conductor of Real Madrid . Fast player, skillful and a great specialist in the passes and assists. A player of great elegance and talent he knew when to stop the game, hiding the ball as a teacher and was able to unbalance at the right time. With Real Madrid, won two Spanish leagues (1957 and 1958) and three European Cups (1957,1958 and 1959).

After a brilliant pass by Madrid, Kopa returned to Stade de Reims in 1959 where he won two league titles and where he remained until his retirement at the edge of the 36 years in 1966 when his team won the French D2.

Cristiano Ronaldo is the world's highest-paid football player

Cristiano Ronaldo leads the standings not only of the Golden Boot. According to the ranking prepared by the Belgian magazine Sport Foot Magazine, he is the world's highest-paid player with a salary of 12 million euros a year. The podium is completed by Rooney, with 11.5, and Messi, 11.

The white player is not alone in his team among the best paid. Kaka, with eight million, is the eighth in the list. Casillas and Benzema (both with 6) occupy the twentieth position and Xabi Alonso is 43, with 4.6 million euros.

Spanish. The Spanish player who receives a higher salary is Fernando Torres (7.8 million euros). In the ranking are displayed other seven national players: Xavi (7.5), Iniesta (7), Casillas, Villa (6),Puyol (5), Silva (5) and Xabi, all world champions. The championship whit more players among the highest paid is the Premier, with 22, followed by the League, with 13. By teams, Manchester City has seven players on this list. In the second position would find tied Real Madrid, Manchester United, Barcelona and Chelsea with five players.

In these times of global crisis, take a look at the ranking of the highest paid players fuels a stupor. But that business is mounted in this way, the market rules. The stars are in high demand and mortgage clubs to fight in the elite. The team that does not invest strong, does not exit. The key is to put the money where it occurs and not where it rots. To understand: pay 12 million to Cristiano Ronaldo can be more profitable than 5.7 to Vieira or 4.5 to Nesta.

Cristiano is a football machine. A superb player who will get points and titles. Like amagnet attracts the public, the advertising world and never disappoints with his boots on. Real Madrid pay his tab without pain, like Casillas, another guarantor of the greatness of the club. Portuguese is the real "Special One". As in everything, the more expensive the cheapest. Of course, in these rankings there is somebody who lives on income.

Interview: Cristiano Ronaldo (1)

Cristiano Ronaldo
After the draw at Almería seems this season will be even harder to overcome Barcelona. Is the entire second lap, but the Catalans have been winter champions breaking many records.
It is always difficult to impose yourself on a rival like this Barcelona. Only become easier if we win every game of the second round. But you have to think positive, because despite all we are in a good time in all three competitions. It is true that Barcelona right now is first, but not that far away. Clearly if we won every game in the end the league will be ours.

The game against Barcelona at the Bernabeu, will be decisive?
No, there is so more. But it will be a great game, no doubt. First we have to win every game until then, it will not be easy.

Talk about the meeting of the Camp Nou, 5-0. What did you think of that night's performance of Iturralde (referee)?
It's a game that is already forgotten, I do not like too much looking back. It was a bad day not just one or two of us, but eight or nine. In a team like ours cannot afford such a thing, but we must move forward and learn from those situations. Barca played very well and we must draw positive conclusions from the defeat. When we play against Barcelona at home we think it will be very different.


League (Day 19): Mourinho reactions


Mourinho angry with the referee
Jose Mourinho evaluated in this way the match in Almería: "We lost two points, but by analyzing the first round the numbers are good. I also say we want to win the championship, not to do good numbers. Let's see what happens in the second round. I hope neither Real Madrid nor Barcelona don't have Perez Lasa again".

The Portuguese insisted the referee: "I do not complain about the referee. I prefer to speak well of them rather than bad. When I can speak well of a referee, as I did in the Cup, I do it with pleasure. When I cannot speak well, I try to speak no bad. I know this referee from 96 and is exactly the same".

"Under normal conditions, the league is very long if the referees’ criteria are equal for all. If the referees whistle with the same feeling to all teams, the league is wide open because we are in the middle of the championship" he said.

Mourinho then went into business Benzema: "He has played every game since Higuain is injured and against Almeria I decided to play with Kaka, who is ready and working well. He needs time to regain his best form, but to have been six months out I think he has done well".

Real Madrid coach did not think team notice the physical effort: "No, fatigue has not weighed. It is obviously not easy to play as many games and players are not machines, but our opponents also played Cup this week, although a match of a different intensity. Maybe we did not win because the opponent defended well and because we played at a rate too low for the first time, easy to control. I'm nobody to talk to the approach of rival. They have made a great effort and I congratulate them for the match they have done".

League (Day 19): Kaka and Ramos reactions


Kaka played as starter against Almeria

How have you seen your first game as starter in this season?
We have not been well and have not done essentially that is to win.

How have you felt on the pitch?
I have not been any better or worse than in other games. I'm slowly gathering pace and I'm feeling better. I have participated in good plays. The team was loose, and Almeria has made a great game and great effort. We have not been able to achieve success.

After this match, can we say that Madrid has lost the league?
Now we cannot lose another game, but we just finished the first round and championship is still much ahead. There is a match we have to play at home against Barcelona. This result is painful, but I do not think that is final. We still have a chance of overcoming the advantage that now leads Barcelona.

Do you think the referee has harmed the Real Madrid not whistling a possible penalty?
In the final leg of the match there were some controversial moves, but I was on the bench and I could not see. I'll have to see them repeatedly on television. I'd rather be sure of what happened before say.

What happened after the game in the incident that took Casillas and Vargas?
I do not know. I did not see what happened between them.

Was Mourinho angrily in the locker room after the match?
The coach was angry, but as we were all team players. Obviously, we are not at all happy with this result.


"I congratulate Almeria for a draw it has achieved. From now, we have to play the remaining games if they were finals. We have not to find excuses for the referees, but it is true that there was a clear penalty on Cristiano. There is still a lot of season ahead and we will continue working to achieve our objectives. It was a tense game. We must recognize that the result we got here is bad, but the league still is not lost. We are going to continue fighting; it still needs to play the entire second round. "

League (Day 19): Granero and Arbeloa reactions


Real Madrid midfielder Esteban Granero has shown sad for failing to achieve the three points in the match against Almeria: "We should not lose points and we cannot go home happy".

The Real Madrid’s player scored the only goal, said that in the last minutes of the match Real Madrid had a chance to win but its effort came too late to achieve: "There have been controversial a couple of plays at the end, a hand and another play with bad luck in the Cristiano’s shot. We waited for the final and there was no luck".

About Mourinho’s decision of playing without striker, Granero said that coach is always right: "Are tactical issues to which we conform. The coach, better than anyone, knows how to put the team".

Despite the tie, Granero said he was confident to catch Barcelona in the overall standings: "At the moment we must wait. There is much and are convinced there is time to go back to Barca".


Real Madrid defender Alvaro Arbeloa said his team was not well in the match against Almeria: "We have been slow to respond. At first you cannot give 45 or 60 minutes".

The White defense was unhappy with the play of his team: "We are a team in every field we have to go to win; we have not done the best today".

In addition, Arbeloa praised the rival team's game: "They were well put together, have a good game looking for counter-attacks". In the same way would not make excuses for the possible exhaustion of the team: "Almeria also played Cup, we cannot excuse. We used to play Wednesday and Sunday and are ready for them".

However, Arbeloa believes that Madrid still has a chance of winning the league: "Every point you lose can be decisive. It is all around; saying that all is lost would be crazy but now I cannot stumble again".

Spanish League: Day 19


Real Madrid drew 1-1 against Almeria on Sunday and were thus unable to bring the first half of the season to a close with their sixth straight win. The Whites surrendered the lead shortly after the restart and Granero equalized 17 minutes later, but the Whites were stymied by referee Perez Lasa, who failed to award a spot-kick in the waning seconds of the match.

Granero scored the Real Madrid's goal

Kaka earned his first start of the season in detriment of Benzema. Without a true ‘9’ on the field, Cristiano, Di Maria and the Brazilian shared duties in attack. Perhaps due to accumulated fatigue from Thursday’s league encounter, Real Madrid were unable to dictate the pace they are accustomed to. The first half flew by with only on chance on goal, but Khedira’s misfire sailed well wide.

Benzema stepped in for Kaka shortly after the restart and Real Madrid grew more confident, but it was Almeria who drew first blood. Piatti turned inward towards goal and managed to get the ball to Ulloa, who beat Casillas with a powerful shot towards the post on 60’.

Mourinho sat Marcelo and Albiol and ordered Granero and Carvallho onto the pitch; a move that saw the defense shrink to only three center-backs. Thirteen minutes after setting foot on the pitch, Granero fired in the equalizer following a pass by Benzema.

Real Madrid pressured in search of a winner as Almeria retreated satisfied with the draw. Just on the verge of the end of regulation, Cristiano Ronaldo’s free kick struck Mbami on the hand and rather than point to the penalty spot, referee Perez Lasa awarded another free kick just outside the box. But as luck would have it, Ronaldo’s ensuing free kick struck the crossbar and the match came to a disappointing end.


Stadium: Mediterranean Games
Attendance: 13,893
Goals: 1-0, M.58: Leo Ulloa. 1-1, M.76: Granero.



Preview: Almeria vs Real Madrid

Kaka could be started against a rising Almería

Kaka could be starter against Almeria

Before the usual comment on the statements of Mourinho (the match always starts on him), should be wondering if the Real Madrid one day acknowledge fatigue, because the effort of the Cup, was preceded by fatigue against Villarreal and often so intense battles tend to make marks, physical or psychological, if not both types. Currently, only Di Maria ends matches tired and his exhaustion is because the guy does not run, run away.

The issue is highlighted because it warns that Real Madrid tombs enemies with a combination of talent and physical strength, which is a natural reflection of the characteristics of Cristiano Ronaldo. It is no coincidence, therefore, whether in the last half hour when the team sets its absolute supremacy.

Almeria is a good place to continue to measure the physical (and psychological) capacity of Real Madrid. For some reason, it may have to do with the running track that surrounds the field, the matches of this stage are to run a lot and play them well enough.

The visitor's advantage is that their host is physically in similar circumstances. Its victory on Wednesday against Deportivo (1-0 Cup) demanded the most and next Wednesday in Riazor, will again be required. Among the historical event (the first time Almeria plays quarter-cup) and the temptation to scratch at Real Madrid, Oltra does not know the best choice for team. He will recover in the league Diego Alves and Crusat.

At Real Madrid, Mourinho showed journalists the path. He said that Kaka could be a starter if not reset Özil (did not train yesterday), masked the absence of Lass of the list (looks bad) and threw a cable Morata, while with another choked Benzema ("lacks the mentality of the player who wants to score") And although this is not mentioned, he does not rule out also a rotation in the midfield to give input to Granero.

Springtime temperatures are expected (20°C) and a front of Almería willing to participate in the casting of nines that opened the Madrid (Uche). Will be a nice match.
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