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Spectre of Tenerife haunts Madrid as Barca hope for another miracle



Real Madrid only need a point at Malaga to become LaLiga champions at Barcelona’s expense. Just don’t mention Tenerife…

Real Madrid’s authoritative 4-1 win at Celta Vigo in midweek put them within touching distance of a first LaLiga title for five seasons.

Zinedine Zidane’s Champions League finalists have only lost four matches this season in all competitions and are enjoying a record streak of having scored in each of their past 63 matches.

The point they require at Malaga to unseat bitter rivals Barcelona is surely a formality that will render any victory over Eibar for Luis Enrique’s men futile.

However, utter the name « Tenerife » and many Madrid fans will instantly cast their mind back with horror to the events of a quarter of a century ago, possibly breaking out into a cold sweat in the process.

Los Blancos headed to the Canary Islands on June 7, 1992 a point ahead of Barcelona going into their final match of the season against a Tenerife side led by for former Madrid forward and future coach and sporting director Jorge Valdano.

Leo Beenhakker’s men raced into a 2-0 lead thanks to Fernando Hierro’s header and a stunning free-kick from Gheorghe Hagi, while Barcelona were labouring at Camp Nou against Athletic Bilbao.

Johan Cruyff’s side paraded their maiden European Cup before kick-off, won against Sampdoria at Wembley the previous month, and the probability of losing out to their bitter rivals in the title race felt like an unwelcome comedown.

A superb solo goal from Tenerife’s Quique Estebaranz reduced the arrears before half-time and a Hristo Stoichkov double put victory on the cards in Catalonia, but it was impossible to foresee the preposterous act of footballing hara-kiri Madrid would embark upon during the final 15 minutes.

First Ricardo Rocha failed to clear a cross and blasted the ball into his own net as he sought to remedy the situation. Panic spread instantly, meaning Manuel Sanchis’ looping, lofted backpass from the Madrid right was hardly ideal.

Goalkeeper Paco Buyo averted the own goal but could not get the ball to safety and, in scenes seemingly unfolding in slow motion, Pier Luigi Cherubino scampered towards the loose ball to deliver a body blow.

There was a five-minute wait for full-time at Camp Nou, with Barca’s victory complete. When transistor radios confirmed glory, Cruyff was asked for his message to Valdano. « Muchos gracias, » he replied

By a cruel quirk of the fixture list, Madrid left the mainland for the final day of the season once more 12 months later. Again, Tenerife laid in wait. Again, they led Barcelona by a point.

The side Valdano had steered away from relegation the previous season were now chasing victory for a place in the UEFA Cup. Again, Madrid froze. Again, Stoichkov fired Barca to glory as they beat Real Sociedad.

Madrid could rightly bemoan Ivan Zamorano having strong penalty appeals rejected but there was none of the previous year’s last-ditch drama.

Oscar Dertycia and Chano headed first-half goals for Tenerife as their visitors staggered towards another title catastrophe.

Named among the substitutes by Beenhaker, Luis Enrique was back at Estadio Heliodoro Rodriguez Lopez in Benito Floro’s Madrid starting line-up, alongside club stalwart Michel as his colleagues revisited their darkest hour.

In his current role as Malaga head coach, Michel is an intriguing character in current title plot – fuelling those old Clasico staples of suspicion and conspiracy.

Asked last month about the prospect of his side inflicting the final-day heartache he twice endured, Michel’s response was acidic.

« I am more Madridista than Valdano, » he said. « I would rather give Madrid a guard of honour than screw it up for them. »

Michel hit a more conciliatory tone this week, insisting the Tenerife curse, or ‘Tenerifazo’, had nothing to do with this fixture.

However, during the interim period, Malaga president Abdullah Al-Thani branded Barcelona « Catalan scum » after the reaction to Michel’s Madridista claim and Camp Nou officials reported him to Spain’s Anti-Violence Committee for Sport.

Conspiracy theorists can also look to the clause in Isco’s 2013 transfer from Malaga to Madrid that entitles his former club to a cash windfall should he become a LaLiga champion, while Michel’s in-form attacker is ex-Barca youngster Sandro Ramirez.

« I owe Barcelona everything, » Sandro said. « If I score and that gives them the league… let’s hope so. »

After Michel infamously underlined his Madrid loyalties, Luis Enrique was entertainingly obtuse when asked if Barca could expect a favour from Malaga.

« If my grandma had wheels she wouldn’t be my grandma, she’d be a bicycle. »

Whatever Madrid’s wheels are attached to, they must hope they do not fall off as the twice stunningly did in Tenerife.


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Here is the evolution of Cristiano Ronaldo’s salary from Sporting to Real Madrid!



Time passes for him, even after 30 years, Cristiano Ronaldo improves with the age that is worth it to be always more expensive and to claim, since November 2016 that he signed it, to the highest contract of her career. At 25 million euros net per year paid by Real Madrid, the Portuguese striker is the fifth highest paid player on the planet. To see what others are gaining in China, he could claim much more, but surely he would also lose, especially in image contracts (juicy about him), because of less media exposure.

In Lisbon already, Cristiano Ronaldo had a star status in the making
Still, it happened time, and that water has flowed under the bridge, before CR7 won the football planet. Initially, at Sporting Portugal, however, he had a place already of choice, considered a hope to hatch, the club of Lisbon paid him in the pros, a salary of around one million euros the season. He was only 17 years old. At 18, he plays for Manchester United and nearly 2.9 million euros the season. It will not go to the end of its contract that will extend, for the first time in 2005, to nearly 4.5 million euros the year, then again, in April 2007, for a salary of around 7 million year without the additional premiums.

From Manchester United to Real Madrid, a salary that explodes
After which opens the era of Real Madrid. Cristiano Ronaldo joined the merengue club at the beginning of summer 2009, for a transfer to 94 million euros, at the record time. His first contract, the Portuguese signed it for six years and 12 million euros the season. Two years before its term, it extended it in September 2013, for 17 million euros. With Lionel Messi at 15 million euros in the season, but after Samuel Eto’o at 20 million euros a year, Anji Makhachkala, he is the second highest paid footballer in the world. The first, if we consider the addition of bonuses and receipts of sponsorship. His image brings him nearly 40 million euros gross, the season, constantly increasing.

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Real Madrid: Zidane’s response to tensions between Sergio Ramos and Cristiano Ronaldo



Present in a press conference before the derby between Atlético and Real on Saturday (20h45), the French technician came back on the tensions between Sergio Ramos and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Since a few days in Madrid, the rumor swells. The relationship between the two men of the Madrid locker room Sergio Ramos and Cristiano Ronaldo would deteriorate. In question, a difference of opinion between the two protagonists on the reasons for the disappointing start of the season of the champion of Spain. CR7 explained recently that the departure of some players like Pepe or James Rodriguez could justify this delay ignition. A thesis swept aside by the Spanish captain believing that the argument advanced by Ronaldo did not hold.
An answer that pointed the Portuguese star. To top it off, the Iberian international confided this week that Neymar would certainly be an excellent rookie for Real Madrid. It was enough to rustle the 2016 European Champion with Portugal, and his oversized ego. Present at a press conference this Friday before the Madrid derby against Atlético on Saturday, the coach of Real Zinedine Zidane made a point on the situation. The latter extinguished the fire, saying that everything was going well between the two protagonists.

« Votre question est maline. Je la respecte, mais je ne vais pas vous répondre. Je vous dis la vérité : j’ai deux joueurs qui font partie de l’histoire du club. Les deux savent ce qui est en jeu et ils se respectent beaucoup. Après, ce qu’ils disent, c’est pour vous. A l’intérieur (du vestiaire), nous sommes tranquilles, nous ne pensons qu’au match de demain. Ils ont réglé entre eux ce souci, il n’y a aucun problème désormais entre eux, » a ainsi confié Zidane. Suffisant pour désamorcer la bombe entre les deux hommes ? Premier élément de réponse samedi au Wanda Metropolitano face aux Colchoneros (le match Atletico-Real Madrid est à suivre en live commenté sur FM samedi à partir de 20h45)…

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‘Neymar is a very good player, but I already have the best’



Rumors are rife that Neymar is on Real Madrid’s radar, with the Brazil star possibly in line with Cristiano Ronaldo.

Zinedine Zidane Refused to rule out a bad move to the Negro Real Madrid to the front of this weekend’s LaLiga derby with Atletico Madrid.

The Brazil star became the world’s most expensive player when he swapped Madrid’s Clasico rivals Barcelona for Paris Saint-Germain in August.

However, reports have linked the 25-year-old with a return to Spain, at the Santiago Bernabeu, and Zidane conceded anything could happen in the future.

« Neymar is a very good footballer, that’s true, » said Zidane as he prepared for Saturday’s meeting with Atletico.

« I have the best players here at this club and the same goes for the dressing room. You can only work with and focus on the players that are here. As for the future, who knows? »

It was put to the Frenchman that Madrid legend Cristiano Ronaldo may have an issue with having to share the spotlight with Neymar, but the Bernabeu boss was evasive on the matter.

« There’s no debate there really, » he added. « We have to focus on today, on now, who knows what will happen in the future?

« I’m not going to come out and share my views on a player who doesn’t play here. I respect him [Neymar], he’s a good player, and that’s it. »

Neymar has helped PSG climb to the top of the League 1 table, scoring seven goals in eight top-flight outings.

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