Thursday, April 21, 2011

The Unforgiven

Afternoon from an overcast, rainy Murcia.

Acho....Predictably, Murcia's "redonda" square filled with wildly celebrating Madrid fans after yesterday's Kings Cup final win over Barcelona. And the very same thing happened in many towns across the country - the celebration of a distant victory as if it were something personal and close to home. Murcia and Madrid are separated by over 400 kilometers.

I know it's ground I have been over many times, but the Madrid/Barcelona snowball grows ever bigger, and until someone in a high place has the balls to divide up the fútbol pie in a more just way, it isn't going to stop any time soon. The media are any kids going to support their local sides when the only thing valued in spanish football is titles?

Can you imagine the centre of Bristol, Southampton or Coventry, Derby or Leicester, fill to the brim with celebrating Manchester United fans after a cup win? It such an absurd notion....but just goes to show the difference between a football loving nation and a nation where only the 2 winning teams matter and the rest is ridiculed.

Another heated discussion in the office yesterday. I insisted that I find Barcelona games boring.....and they couldn't get it into their heads that I can't see football as a spectacle, and that however good the goals are, another 5 - 0 thrashing of their uncompetitive rivals is about as interesting as golf tournament on the radio. So what are you going to do when they don't play so well some time in the future? Change colours and support whoever plays best? To me that's just not football.

The ups and downs are part of the territory....and supporting you local, mediocre club can some days give you higher highs and lower lows than winning your twentysomethingth Copa/thirtysomethingth Liga....or....just seeing pathetic blubbing Barsa fans after yesterday's final, fans who have celebrated countless titles over the last decade......just seems so false and so plastic and so ridiculous......"I can't take it....we didn't win our 43rd title in the last 12 years....I'm going to blub like a spoilt child".

It was nice to see Barcelona lose......but just as bad seeing Madrid win. And it would have been vice-versa too.


  1. Following on from your blog the other day about the structure of the Spanish league I've just read that Barca and Madrid pay their players on average over $7m a year and are the two highest paying teams in the world, with NY Yankees coming third. And Jumilla can't pay the ref's fees? It's just not right is it?

  2. From a first tier of 20 teams, second tier of 22 teams, we jump to 80 teams in the third tier - and that is just too many for it to be attractive in any aspect (sponsors, attendances). The fourth tier is another joke, 360 teams! Compare this to England.....20 in the top tier, 24 in the second, 24 in the third, and 24 in the fourth tier (third and fourth tier sponsored by Coca Cola for a bunch of cash). 5th tier sponsored by Blue Square for another cash injection....and all the refs get paid. Segunda B, sponsored