Real Madrid wants a white Santiago Bernabeu stadium

Real Madrid wants a Santiago Bernabeu stadium 'dressed' in white for the tomorrow's match. For this reason, yesterday the club launched an unprecedented campaign, with Casillas, Ramos and Cristiano as spokespersons, to ask all the fans who will attend the game against Mallorca to wear the home shirt of Real Madrid.

Cristiano Ronaldo, Sergio Ramos and Iker Casillas

The club wants a white party in the last match of the season the day the team will receive the Spanish League trophy. Hence, the two captains and the Portuguese star have encouraged all Real Madrid fans, through the club's website, to go in uniform to the game that puts the finishing touch to the league 2011-2012. "This year we have experienced unforgettable moments. And on Sunday we want to live one more with you all" says Casillas. While Ramos explains why they invite to the fans to show off colors: "This league is white and we want to celebrate with a white Bernabeu". Finally, Cristiano launches the campaign slogan: "This Sunday, wear 'the white'."

The championship celebration party and the possibility that Real Madrid reaches the milestone of 100 points will make the Bernabeu stadium will be full. And most fans attending the match against Mallorca will go with their white shirts.

Spanish League: New trophy for Real Madrid

Real Madrid will have a new Spanish league cup newly manufactured. Barcelona has achieved as owner the previous one by winning three consecutive leagues. So the jewelry at Madrid that works for the Spanish Footaball Federation (makes the League, Cup and Super Cup trophies) has had all year ahead to do another one. The trophy is made using hand-tools and the body is one piece made. Handles are manufactured with the help of templates and are also handmade. The base is wood. It is machined and it has a hexagonal plate where it is already engraved the name of Real Madrid as Spanish League champion 2011/12. It is the first to be put in this cup and will last at least two more years, if Real Madrid wins three straight titles.

Real Madrid trophy room with a Spanish League trophy
Spanish League trophy at Santiago Bernabeu stadium

The trophy arrived yesterday afternoon at the Bernabeu stadium. Tucked into a box, very clean and with two white ribbons, one on each side, waits until tomorrow, when will look and be displayed to the whole Real Madrid fans. The Cup weighs about 20 kilos (formerly weighed about 15) and is 65 centimeters tall. Will be on display at the Museum of the Bernabeu until next season and must be returned to the jeweler to retouch if have been some setbacks or damages and engrave the name of the next champion in other plate. Then, if Real Madrid cannot win next season, will receive a reply trophy, a few centimetres smaller, that will stay in the trophy room.

Real Madrid, with five, Barcelona, with four, and Athletic Bilbao, with one, are the only teams which are owners of a league trophy. To get the property of the trophy a club has to win three consecutive or to be the first team winning five alternative leagues of a cycle without another club in between with three consecutive wins because then the counter is reset. It is curious that Atletico Madrid has won nine leagues and do not have the league trophy in its stadium.

On the other way, in memory of Real Madrid is still the picture of how Ramos dropped the Spanish Cup (Copa del Rey) last year. There was a plan B and the team had a new cup in a few hours. For the league cup, there is also a reply trophy.


Luis Figo: "Real Madrid has achieved an amazing league"

Real Madrid received yesterday afternoon during the training the visit of Luis Figo. The former Portuguese player came to Valdebebas sport city and praised the team that Jose Mourinho manages and spoke of the possibility that whites could achieve a record 100 points: "Real Madrid has achieved an amazing league and I am happy to enjoy such a year. Achieve 100 points could be left to history and is one motivation for the team, but the important thing is to win the league".

Figo along with Mourinho and Casillas at Valdebebas sport city
Luis Figo with Casillas and Jose Mourinho

The Portuguese is currently visiting Madrid and acknowledged that he was wanting to meet with some members of the Real Madrid squad: "It is a pleasure to see friends and have the chance to see the coach, with whom I worked at Inter, the players I know and people working in the club. I am still working with Inter in Italy and I used that I am here in Madrid to come see the team".

The former footballer analyzed the League the white team has won and noted the numbers that has achieved Real Madrid: "Real Madrid continues to add leagues, which is most important. The season has been spectacular and players are breaking numerous records. Only with this, they demonstrate their ability to work. I am very happy to enjoy such a year".

Figo also spoke of his countryman Cristiano Ronaldo, a player who never ceases to surprise by his innate desire to excel: "Every year he continues at a high level, showing the quality he has and beating his own numbers. You never know when he will stop. Cristiano is getting figures that do not seem real. He has a fantastic team that helps him to achieve these numbers along with his quality. I am sure he will reach more records".

On Sunday's match against Mallorca, which will close the official season, the former Real Madrid said: "People will live a party atmosphere as the team ends the year with its fans. They are doing a great season and this Sunday they will certainly have a good time with their supporters because the environment at the Bernabeu is always great".

Bernabeu stadium will be full to celebrate the championship

The Santiago Bernabeu stadium will be full to the rafters on Sunday for the match against Mallorca which closes the Championship (8:00 pm -CET-) in which, with a win, Real Madrid will reach 100 points and beat the record Barca has Barca from 2009-10 season with 99. The major bookmakers have granted an average of 85% chance of this happening, and nobody has wanted to miss the opportunity to live on-site the event and the subsequent celebrations. Real Madrid secretly prepares a big surprise to the audience. Before, the best point record of Real Madrid in a season (in this league, team has already 97) was set with Pellegrini on the bench in 2009-10 season with 96 points.

A full Santiago Bernabeu Stadium
Santiago Bernabeu stadium

Yesterday there were fewer than 100 tickets on sale at a price of between 45 and 90 euros. In addition, 30 other VIP locations that reach 525 euros. The filled is guaranteed for an historic evening, not only for the celebration of a league, the 32nd, which cuts a victorious cycle of Barcelona of three consecutive, but the numbers that have been achieved, full of records.

The 107 goals in a season of the Buitre's gang was beaten in Week 35. Real Madrid now has 117. Another record fell in the away performances: no one ever won 16 road games before (Barca won 14 matches last season) and no one made ​​50 points away from home. Nor any team scored 51 goals in away matches (Barca was left in 49). And if Madrid wins, will set another record: 32 wins in a league (In the 2009-10 season Barcelona and Real reached 31. Also the current Mourinho's team, obviously).


New friendly match of pre-season: Real Madrid vs Milan

Each day that passes, more details and news are known of the 2012-2013 pre-season of the white team and the latest news is that Real Madrid will face Milan on August 8, at New York.

Pepe fights against Ibrahimovic in the last Real Madrid vs Milan
Last AC Milan vs Real Madrid

The two teams which have won more European Cups (nine the whites and seven the 'rossoneri') will face off in New York, in the World Football Challenge. Not yet confirmed the stadium that will host the game, but all indications are that the match will be played in the modern Yankee Stadium, built in 2009 and home of the New York Yankees. Turned into a football field it has capacity for 54,200 spectators and will also host another match in the same tournament, the match between Chelsea and PSG on July 22.

This is the third summer friendly match that Real Madrid would play in its U.S.A. tour. The other two will be played before to the clash against A.C. Milan. The first confirmed was that of August 2, against the Beckham's LA Galaxy at the Home Depot Center in California. Three days later, Real Madrid will take the bags to move to Las Vegas. There, the rival of Mourinho's players will be Juventus at the Sam Boyd Stadium.

Real Madrid and Milan have played recently. Both coincided at the group stages of the Champions Leagues 09-10 and 10-11. The Whites won one (2-0 last season), tied two and was defeated at the Bernabeu stadium (2-3 in 09-10 season).

Real Madrid sale operation 2012-2013

Mourinho is clear about how many players the team will sign: "We will make two signings to strengthen the group" said recently, but hesitates about how many are going out. He gave some other indications: "Higuain and Sahin will not leave" he acknowledged too, what reduces the blacklist, but there are several white players who have nothing clear their future for next season.

Real Madrid store bag

Adan wants to leave. The goalkeeper believes that he has completed a cycle and with 24 years, which will be 25 next Saturday, wants to go out to play minutes. His situation is reminiscent of Diego Lopez (current Villarreal's goalkeeper). This is a problem because Mourinho had the goal well defended and this would force him to sign other goalie. So he wants to convince Adan and Mourinho is willing to offer him to play the Spanish Cup from start to finish. Then there is the club, which is not going to give away. For less than two million euros is not going to transfer the player.

With Albiol is the same. Mourinho has no objection. He wants the player to stay because the coach values his commitment and professionalism, but the central defender is not ready to lose another year and wants to find a way out. Player's agent is scheduled to meet shortly at Madrid with the sport management of the club. Here the problem is the price of the transfer. Albiol cost 15 million euro just three years ago and the club will want to recover much of the investment. Among other things, to sell would require to sign, and sign well, because although Varane is a future option, can not remain as the only alternative for Pepe and Ramos.

The sale of Kaka is a very delicate operation. In Madrid the staff is very cautious and prudent. Here, what player thinks about is key. He has a score to settle with the fans and to himself and does not lose hope of succeeding in white. On the other hand, is the dream of the World Cup in Brazil, and he needs the minutes that Mourinho is not going to give him. After the decision of the player, who has a pending meeting with Mourinho to discuss his future, Real Madrid will move tab, but is clear that for less than 25 million euro, Kaka does not move. In this sense, the PSG is the only way today.

Lass Diarra will be a headache. Already last year the club got big problems to transfer him. After he wasted the whole summer pre-season wanting to go (he did not attend the tour throught U.S.A. and China) knocked down, at the last moment, the agreement reached between Tottenham and Real Madrid. The problem is that now Lass does not want to leave. He prefers to finish the remaining year of the contract and go free in 2013. It will be very complicated and much more earn some money with a player who cost 24 million euro.

Another problem is Altintop. The Turkish came free, but his salary is too high for the poor performance he has given. Mourinho bet on him for his experience and versatility, but could not make the most he would have liked. So, for what Altintop offers, the club is in favor of a youth squad player, who would be much cheaper. Further after the positive experiences of Granero and Callejon.

Finally there is the issue of Carvalho. Mourinho said he was renewed until 2013, but the club assumes that the announcement will not be a problem and the player will come out.


Real Madrid prepares the 2012-2013 pre-season

Real Madrid and Juventus will play on August 5 in Las Vegas one of the most attractive friendly matches of next summer. It will be in Las Vegas, under the 'World Football Challenge', a tournament that aims to bring football to the American fans. The previous edition (2011) was won by the team of Jose Mourinho.

Cristiano Benzema ans Cannavaro. Real Madrid vs Juventus 2009
Real Madrid vs Juventus. Friendly match 2009

The announcement of the new Real Madrid friendly match comes just days after both clubs have secured the conquest of the league in Spain and Italy. Madrid did it last May 2 in San Mames and Juventus on Sunday, after its victory, also away, against Cagliari.

The match between whites and 'bianconeri' will stage the Sam Boyd Stadium, a football field with a capacity of nearly 40,000 spectators. Three days before this match, on August 2, Real Madrid will face the Los Angeles Galaxy, David Beckham's current team and current champion of the MLS at Home Depor Center in Carson (California).

The game against the Galaxy, which is also framed in the World Challenge tournament (with Chelsea, Liverpool, Milan, PSG, Toronto and Seattle Sounders), will be the fourth match between the Galaxy and Real Madrid. The first was just at the Home Depot Center in 2005 (Beckham was active in the Real Madrid), and ended with a 2-0, Madrid victory . After, at the Rose Bowl in 2010, Mourinho's team won 3-2, in his first summer as a coach. Last year, at Memorial Coliseum, Real Madrid won again (4-1).

Real Madrid is organizing the championship celebration

Real Madrid is organizing the celebration party for the title that will give away to fans who will come to the Santiago Bernabeu on Sunday. The events will begin after the referee whistles the end of the match against Mallorca (around 9:45 pm -CET-) and the club is preparing it in secret out of respect to Mallorca team, which has aspirations on the final day to get a place for Europa League.

Real Madrid celebrates the 31st Spanish Championship at the Bernabeu
Santiago Bernabeu stadium: 31st Spanish Championship

Employees of the club say the act will be spectacular, with a great end, a fireworks show that will be installed in the outskirts of the white coliseum. There will also be light entertainment with light beams installed for the occasion. In addition, the club is preparing several custom videos for each of the players in the squad with images of the league and will show a special one with all the goals Cristiano Ronaldo has scored in this championship.

The advance with which the Real Madrid has been champion mathematically, six days ago at San Mames with two matches remaining, has allowed Real Madrid to plan to detail the party to celebrate with their fans the Spanish League 32. The penultimate, the conquered in the 2007-08 season with Schuster on the bench, also was won in advance (three matches) and the white team had a celebration worthy of a Hollywood production.

Angel Maria Villar, president of the Spanish Football Federation, will present the trophy of champions to Iker Casillas after the game. This event will be held on the stage of authorities because the president Villar is not welcomed in the Bernabeu stadium after the 'gifts' from the federation to FC Barcelona in recent years. In fact, since 2000, Real Madrid has won four leagues and Villar has not dared to go down to the lawn to give the trophy to the Real Madrid captain.


Mourinho: "I have never wanted to seem perfect"

Jose Mourinho gave an interview to Spanish newspaper ABC. He reviews the most important aspects of this year and says Higuain and Sahin will be on the team next year. He further acknowledges that Adam will leave the team because he wants to play more games and it is difficult with Casillas.

Jose Mourinho

"My objective is to try to win more league titles with Real Madrid. I am delighted to stay on. I needed to coach this team in order for my career to be complete, but winning with Real Madrid is more important than coaching or winning with the team"

"My objective was to win La Liga and now I want to try to win more championships with this side. I have two years left on my contract and my family and I are happy with a stability we never had before due to moving every two or three years. We are delighted to remain here"

"President Florentino Perez managed to achieve the difficult task of getting me excited about his project. He told me Real Madrid needed me and that I needed Real Madrid to round up my career after winning the Champions League with Inter Milan. I am grateful to the President for convincing me to take that step and for his support. Coaching Real Madrid has been, and will continue to be, the toughest job in my career"

"My life's objective is not to defeat Barcelona, but it was very important to win the league title in order to break their run of late. It was necessary for Real Madrid, in their condition of the most important club in history, to prevent their national dominance from increasing"

"It is very difficult to talk about cycles, but I do think it is clear that Real Madrid are better than they were two years ago. And nothing will be the same again. We have not won the Champions League, but this team did not even reach the quarterfinals a few years back, while we have managed to play the semifinals two straight years, losing one of them in the penalty shootout. Real Madrid cannot win all the time, but they should always come close"

"Tell critics to look at my results. The richness of my career comes from coaching in different countries. You cannot win in Spain if you play like you did in Italy"

"I have managed to transform the mentality of my players, who used to think playing flashy football was enough. It is not enough with me. Talent is essential, but emotion, ambition and feeling are as important. We have a very good staff comprising Rui Faria, Silvino, Morais and Karanka. Most of my players are now better than they were before they started working with me"

"I love Real Madrid's beautiful game. I like straightforward, dynamic, fast and intense football with fast transitions. I love the football Real Madrid have played this year. They have been similar to the Porto side with which I won the Champions League and the UEFA Cup"

Jose Mourinho celebrates the Spanish league championship

"Leading is difficult. You have to stimulate your men and show both sides with them. Casillas once said to me, 'There were times this season in which you put a lot of pressure on us and were rough on the the group.' I laughed, but I knew what I was doing and what I wanted to provoke. I also showed a gentler side, like when we lost against Bayern Munchen. 'Relax,' I said to them then, 'You have already won the league title.' You have to bring the best out of everyone. A coach who doesn't like to act this way with his players won't last too long on the team"

"I have very good memories of my time with Guardiola. I met him when he was a player and I an assistant coach. I have never wanted to seem perfect and I have never hidden my defects. I have not done this outside of football either. Nobody is perfect and I am not going to change at 49. I've always been indepenedent and I have never worried about personal attacks. They do hurt when my children read them, but I simply tell them nothing's the matter"

"You have to handle special responsibility to be a player or a coach at Real Madrid, but it helps you grow. The first time Florentino Perez spoke to me he said: 'If you want to be one of the best coaches in history you have to come to Real Madrid.' I agree. My credo is that people who work in football have to love the sport and Real Madrid or whichever club they're at. It is very difficult to achieve objectives without creating an ambitious atmosphere. Everyone here helped win the title. I told the President and Director General Jose Angel Sanchez months ago that I would stay on and that I had nothing to do with any club that wanted me"

"Higuain will stay on. He has a good contract for many years. The club may receive a 40, 50 or 60 million euro offer, but they will not sell. My two centre forwards next season will be Higuain and Benzema. That's all there is to it"

"Real Madrid are in the goalkeeper market because Adan doesn't want to continue on the team. I have to convince him, to stay. I have even asked Iker for help! There are no problems between Casillas and myself. The whole situation of having to look for a replacement for Adan became a story of wanting to get rid of Casillas in the press"

"Pepe had a great season and people should acknowledge that. Many in the situation he is been in and with everyhting he is withstood would have left for Italy or England. When we talked about his contract extension he always wanted to stay"

"Benzema is very good and he is responsible for his transformation. He managed to overcome the small fears and insecurities he had in his first two seasons on the team and had a great campaign"

"Sahin will also stay. He never had a full preseason with us, but he will now"

Real Madrid negotiates the transfer of Lukasz Piszczek

Strengthen the right back side remains a priority for the Real Madrid for next season and has started the naming dances. The choice seems to be the Polish Lukasz Piszczek (Czechowice-Dziedzice, June 3, 1985), Borussia Dortmund defender. In fact, for weeks Real Madrid has talked with Borussia Dortmund about the transfer of the player and the price could be around 10 million euros.

Lukasz Piszczek

Piszczek, 26, fits perfectly into the profile of long-haul right back that Mourinho wants to share the place with Arbeloa. The Polish is a fast player, aggressive, strong in the air (1.86 meters) and with a clear tendency offensive. On the other hand, Piszczek is weaker on tactics because he was converted form midfielder. In fact this is his second season serving as right back. If he finally signs for Real Madrid will be reunited with his former teammate Nuri Sahin.

Piszczek will be starter with Poland at Euro next summer, in which his country will act as host with Ukraine. It will be a good test to check the performance of the right back of the Bundesliga champion in a major international event. Lukasz Piszczek who has played six times with his national team, played for Poland a few minutes during the Euro in Austria and Switzerland, but this time he will take a more important role.

Besides reinforcing the demarcation of the right back, Real Madrid also works to improve the defensive line by signing a central defender, since, with the sure departure of Carvalho and possible of Albiol, Mourinho would be in that position only with Pepe, Ramos and Varane.


Jose Mourinho wants a right back

Mourinho wants to fit in, definitely, all the pieces in what will be his third season as head of Real Madrid. For this, he gives priority to the signing of a good right back, a player who could play on the right side of the defense and alternate the place with Arbeloa.

Arbeloa playing a UEFA Champions League match
Alvaro Arbeloa

This season has been shown that in this position there is a deficit. The Portuguese coach has already used up to eight players in the right wing. He began with Sergio Ramos as a starter, but Carvalho's injury caused the Seville player to settle in the position of central defender. Earlier in the preseason, Mourinho tried with Varane. The Frenchman played against Hertha Berlin in what was an experiment to see what performance could offer this young player like '2'. He did not take over this demarcation. Raphael Varane is considered a pure central defender.

Raul Albiol has been the ultimate test. He played in Granada, moved to the right side and with little influence in this very specific zone of the field.There have been more players who have held this place, even though Arbeloa has been starter for the Portuguese coach, benefiting from the relocation of Sergio Ramos.

Fabio Coentrao was chosen for the match Real Madrid against Barcelona at the Bernabeu in the league. Against Guardiola's team have also played on the right side Lass and Altintop in the Cup matches. A total of eight players for a position. Mourinho now wants to close the circle with a new recruit who will have to take a leap of quality to allow the team to continue growing.

Ricardo Kaka: The saddest end

Kaka is living his most difficult days as a player of Real Madrid. The Brazilian is happy for the league title, which has enjoyed celebrating in Cibeles, but at the same time is sunk by his personal situation. The white '8' knows that he is not important for Mourinho and that the season ending he is doing is not helping to reverse the situation. The player does not perform and Mourinho does not forgive.

Mourinho with Kaka talking on the bench
Kaka with Mourinho on the bench

Kaka has played only three of the last eight games for Real Madrid this season. Three games against Atletico, Bayern and Granada where he has been pointed out by Mourinho and the fans. At the Vicente Calderon was replaced in half time after a gray first half. The same happened on Saturday in Los Carmenes against Granada. Real Madrid was losing after the first 45 minutes and Mourinho did not hesitate to let him in the locker room.

Against Bayern in the second leg, Kaka was a substitute and Mourinho put him on the field at 75 minutes thinking it could be the day of the Brazilian. The Portuguese looked to the bench and saw the Golden Ball 2007, an expert player in the Champions League, and thought that would still have his night of glory with the shirt of Madrid. But Kaka came out and sank. He tried everything and did not achieve almost nothing. And to make matters worse, missed a penalty in the fateful shootout. The Bernabeu stadium saw everything.

Kaka, above all things, has some clear his desire to continue at Real Madrid. The midfielder said he is happy for the league title, another success for his career, although he admits that his role on the team has overshadowed that success. "It was very nice despite not being the star of the conquest. It is something different from what I was used" he says, although he prefers to be positive and says it is "a great motivation to go back to being a main piece of the team".

Now it's wait and see what happens with Kaka this summer. The player knows that Real Madrid wants to sell and he is aware that its cycle in the white team is close to come to the end, but his departure will not be so simple. The PSG wants him, but Madrid will try to get the most for the Brazilian, who cost 67 million euros. Be seen to the true interest of the French team, that would have to pay Kaka a salary of 10 million euros per season.


Real Madrid: Higuain is not for sale

Gonzalo Higuain at Cibeles

Higuain and his immediate future held in suspense to the Real Madrid fans, who saw signs and gestures in celebration of Cibeles which cast doubt on whether or not the Argentinian will start the preseason with Mourinho's team. Perhaps for these reasons the club has decided to position itself to prevent it from getting larger the ball over the uncertain fate that awaits 'Pipita' Higuain. From the Bernabeu stadium, members of the board send a strong message and very clear, "Higuain is not for sale. He has several years of contract and will stay here". To dispel the suspicion that this might be a strategic position to increase the value, the club insists: "If we set a transfer price, even indecent, we would be putting up for sale. No, Mourinho wants him. He can only go if someone comes with the 200 million euro of the termination clause".

The player feels loved by the fans, but not comfortable at all. He has felt as a substitute as usual from the beginning of the second round and against Bayern and Barca in the Nou Camp played just a few minutes. Higuain feels he has lost the battle with Benzema and therefore, the tempting offers that come (especially from PSG) raise questions about his departure. "If we sell him, for instance, by 50 million euros, we are going to have to spend another 50 to sign a new player who could not suit the team. Would be a mistake to let him go". In the upset of Higuain is also the low salary compared to some players who are in a hierarchy similar to him. After last year's renewal he earns 3.8 million euros and his claims would be around 5 million.

Sources from the locker room downplay the situation: "Pipita has not told us to go to leave, nor his teammates think he will leave in June. The gesture of the shirt in Cibeles was just the opposite has been said. His teammates wanted to convey affection after the informations about his departure"

Higuain's older brother, Federico, who plays as midfielder for Colón de Santa Fe in Argentina, said: "My brother Gonzalo is not going to leave Real Madrid. He is very comfortable and quiet here, where he is beloved. At this moment he is not going to go". On the relationship Gonzalo-Mourinho he said: "The press is very misleading. Not everything the papers say is true".

Granada 1 - 2 Real Madrid (Spanish League Day 37)

Granada players perform the guard of honour to Real Madrid

Nothing took the Real Madrid that Granada did not leave at its fingertips. The white team reached the tie by an excess of Moises, Granada's defender that mistook the sport, and won with a goal by Cortes, who mistook the goal. The jar was of cold water and falls on the head of the home team with the enclosed container. To the champion, the Scottish shower served to wake up and understand that their shots are not blanks, still kill. No blame is the referee, he was only a way of distributing impotence.

The latter was forged from the beginning. After three days of applause and congratulations, the players of Real Madrid assumed the Granada players' guard of honour, led them into a hall of plush carpets and spider lamps. They matched only in the spider. The champion came into the game rocked by the movement in reverse that sailors call a hangover. Experts say there is only one answer to this malaise: see Grease. Too bad the short flight to Granada does not allow the screening of therapeutic films.

It took three convulsions in the Real Madrid's defense to understand that no one knocked at the door, which was Ighalo who rammed against their heads. It was not necessary the Hawaiian lei to know who came from party.

Real Madrid players celebrate the second goal

Just about football, Adan, Varane, Albiol, Sahin and Granero made the starting eleven. Granada need one point to avoid relegation and had a strong start, netting the opener in the fourth minute through Jara, who managed to nutmeg Adan.

They looked for more goals and Adan and Marcelo were forced to team up for a clearance on the 6-minute mark. Real Madrid were more relaxed than usual and the locals used this to make steals and play with more intensity. Adan cleared a free-kick with his fists in the 20th minute and Real gradually started to dominate more: Sahin sent the ball over the crossbar with a distant shot (35') and Ronaldo nearly netted an equaliser from a header that missed the target by mere inches (41').

Xabi Alonso and Higuain replaced Sahin and Kaka in the second half and the team's performance became more intense. Julio Cesar cleared a Benzema shot on the 58-minute mark and Callejon came on for Di Maria soon after (59'). Cristiano Ronaldo nearly finished off a strong cross, clearly showing the Whites deserved a goal. The Portuguese striker again had a great chance, but a shot of his on the goal-line was saved by Julio Cesar (63').

Moises tackled Ronaldo in the box and the Madridista converted the penalty. The Whites wanted more and Granada started to look nervous after the goal, with Cortes eventually netting an own goal in extra time following a Benzema cross that Higuain did not finish off (92'). Tragic end. Undeserved, perhaps. But there is life. And a hundred points to get.


Stadium: Los Carmenes
Attendance: 22,000
Goals: 1-0, (m.5): Franco Jara. 1-1, (m.80): Cristiano Ronaldo. 1-2, (m.90+3): David Cortes (o.g.).
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