Atlético de Madrid

The love that hurts.

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    26 year old in New York; Passionate fan of the beautiful game; lover of Argentina (los Albicelestes); long-suffering, devoted supporter of Atlético Madrid (los Rojiblancos) for the past 13 years.
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Archive for the ‘Fernando Torres’ Category

14-October Interview of GARCÍA PITARCH

Posted by atleti on October 15, 2007

Here’s an eye-opening interview of Garcia Pitarch, sporting director. Some of the phrasing is difficult to translate to English, but I tried my best.

INTERVIEWER: The name Riquelme [looms constantly…]…
Reply: The [expectation is normal]. There are, of course, external factors: the media, who give their opinion. And fans believe them, but that’s not how it is. Reality is another factor. With everything that surrounded him…I see that it was the best decision [to not go through with the transfer]. I’m glad that we did not sign him.

MY THOUGHTS: He’s glad we didn’t sign Riquelme?! So, he must obviously be happy we signed mediocre Eller and Cleber instead? RIDICULOUS.

INTERVIEWER: Each poor result will be a reminder of the transfer.
Reply: It’s all because of the Copa America. If not, there would be no case for Riquelme, and no expectations.

MY THOUGHTS: Here he claims that had it not been for Riquelme’s splendid display in the Copa America, there wouldn’t be a fuss or demand for him to join Atleti. This seems a bit bizarre. Yes, Riquelme had a fantastic Copa America, but he’s still one of the greatest footballers in the world. Granted, he is temperamental, which can be a deterrent, but to say that the attention over him was simply and only because of this summer’s Copa America is ludricous.

INTERVIEWER: But there is [still] debate [on it.]
Reply: No, that’s football. Had it not been Riquelme, it would have been Torres. This time around it was Riquelme; in Athletic Bilbao it was with Ezquerro and with Madrid it was with Kaka.

INTERVIEWER: Do you understand the idiosyncrasies of Atleti?
Reply: Valencia have a similar situation. But there is something that makes [Atleti] special. It’s that mystique of pessimism[…] I do not believe in it[…]

INTERVIEWER: Pablo continues to play; Jurado came from arch rivals [Real Madrid]; Reyes…
Reply: If the club decides to count on a footballer, it will do so [without the interference of the media, which is fleeting and not permanent]. It was a sporting decision and, every passing day, it’s clear that the club made the right decision. Pablo has returned to his best form, Jurado is important in the squad, and the supporters already see Reyes as indispensible[…]

INTERVIEWER: What do you know about the [extortion] of the ultras to the players in exchange for applause?
Reply: Nothing. Our work is subjected to social pressure, which fanatical groups are apart of. I do not know of any extortion. The only opinions I read are in blogs [and writings]…If that’s it, then there isn’t a problem.

INTERVIEWER: How did you feel when Torres announced his departure?
Reply: [We suspected it.] In fact, the previous season we signed Mista because we thought he might have left after the EURO games then. We had signed Forlan before his official exit.

MY THOUGHTS: Wait, WHAT? Another ridiculous decision. They extended Mista’s contract because they viewed him as a possible replacement for Torres when they thought he might leave?! Sad, truly sad. Lamentable.

INTERVIEWER: Were there bids for other players?
Reply: For Pablo, Seitaridis, Pernia, Maniche, Mista, and Maxi. But we counted on these players. With those with only one year left to their contracts, I suggested a transfer. That happened with Galletti, Petrov, and Luccin…

MY THOUGHTS: Among others, I still think it was a poor decision to keep Mista and let Atleti youngster Braulio go out on loan to Getafe.

INTERVIEWER: Will the club [prevent a departure of Agüero]?
Reply: Kun has an important clause in his contract. The market is [troubled] and there are few talented youngsters. If the club keep him, good; if not, the clause is high– and if [clubs] want him, it would be good business.

MY THOUGHTS: So, they’re basically willing to sell our top player for the right price. Depressing and appalling. Yes, I’m aware that it will always be difficult for us to hold on to our best players, but, even so, the club are ready to sell out for a pretty penny.

INTERVIEWER: So, who signs then: Gil, Cerezo, you, or Quilón?
Reply: […the President, the general director, the coach, and myself…]

Posted in Atletico Madrid, Braulio, Diego Forlan, Fernando Torres, Javier Aguirre, Jose Antonio Reyes, Juan Roman Riquelme, Jurado, Pablo Ibanez, Sergio Aguero | 9 Comments »

Jornada 7: Barcelona v Atlético Madrid

Posted by atleti on October 5, 2007

I’m not one to write detailed previews, but I like to make exceptions for certain fixtures, such as the Madrid derbi and games against Barcelona (a derbi in its own way). Since our return to top flight football, we have been a sort of bogey team for Barcelona, frustrating them at home and even winning at Camp Nou twice. The difference this season than previous ones is that we no longer have Torres. El Niño had an impressive goal-scoring record against Barcelona– some truly memorable goals, it must be said.

Do we have what it takes to frustrate them with our new squad? I think so. Now, don’t get me wrong, despite our current winning streak and our good record at Camp Nou, this is still a very complicated fixture: Barcelona are a powerhouse and their record speaks for itself. That said, I respect Barcelona, but I do not fear them.

Their injury list, at the moment, is long and composed of key players: Eto’o, Zambrotta, Yaya Toure, Marquez, Edmilson, et al. Despite the rearranging  Rijkaard will have to do (eg Puyol & Milito paired up in the back), I think this is an opportunity for los rojiblancos to exploit these defensive absenses. We’ve been looking incredibly threatening attack-wise, creating opportunities & scoring a variety of impressive goals, from long-range gooolazos to short-distance shots & headers.

Our main concern should be our defensive performance. Although we have an impeccable record of clean sheets entering this Jornada, defence is always an area that I’ve felt we need to beef up. For this game especially, it’s incredibly important that the back-line remain focused & aware of their surroundings. Messi, Henry, and Ronaldinho will always pose a threat.

It’s unclear who Aguirre will choose at this point. Normally, he would use Pablo-Perea. With Perea out, Aguirre has two options: Ze Castro and Eller, both of whom have their weaknesses and strengths. In terms of left-backs, I expect Aguirre to choose Pernia over Antonio Lopez. As far as right-back position is occurred, Seitaridis is fit, so I don’t doubt he’ll be chosen. Although Leo Franco is deemed fit for the game, I hope that Aguirre chooses Abbiati.

Luis Garcia
and Simao are prepared to face their ex-club and what a fantastic time to be facing them! Luis Garcia is in fantastic form and Simao, with each performance, continues to show signs of incredible technical ability & creativity. He still hasn’t shown us all that he has to offer– as I mentioned before, he still needs to find his ‘niche’. This is the sort of fixture I expect both players to go above & beyond, to prove how far they’ve come since their days at Camp Nou.

Messi v Aguero (or, Messi < Aguero?)
Good friends. Both tied for Pichichi at the moment. It adds another interesting angle to this fixture. KUN KUN KUN!

I expect him to remain benched for this game. From what I’ve seen, he still hasn’t given Aguirre any reason to include him in the starting 11. I hope that his appearances as sub improve so that he can regain his top spot. That position will be handed to Reyes.

Maniche was rested in mid-week and will return to play alongside the always impressive Raul Garcia— a proven key player in midfield who isn’t afraid of taking a shot at goal from long distance.

Abbiati; Seitaridis; Pablo; Zé Castro; Pernía; Maniche; Raúl García; Simao; Reyes; Agüero; Forlán

SUBS: Falcón; Eller Antonio López; Cléber; Luis García; Maxi; Jurado

“It would be a lie if I said we [don’t enter this game in good form], but they are also strong. Barcelona have demonstrated, in the Champions League as well as Liga, that it’s very difficult to win at Camp Nou. Hopefully it’ll be a good game; one that will give the people something to celebrate…

In closing, here are some excerpts from Luis’ recent interview.

On the possibility of a rojiblanco victory:
“I think it’s going to be an interesting game[…] I’m confident that my club will win. Barcelona are a complicated club and we should not make any mistakes and remain concentrated in not conceding any goal.

On Barcelona:
“They have a great squad, with plenty of talent and any player can complicate [the game for us.] [We must] be wary of all the players. Ronaldinho is a great player…

In terms of us, he said that we are working well as a team and that we are creating many goal-scoring opportunities. Evidence: In our last 5 games, we have scored 17 goals, thanks to Kun, Forlan, Raul Garcia, et al.



Posted in Antonio Lopez, Atletico Madrid, Christian Abbiati, Fernando Torres, Javier Aguirre, Leo Franco, Luis Garcia, Maniche, Mariano Pernia, Maxi Rodriguez, Pablo Ibanez, Raul Garcia, Sergio Aguero, Simao Sabrosa, Ze Castro | 22 Comments »

Adiós, Torres.

Posted by atleti on July 3, 2007


06/07 season was rough (disastrous and embarassing, even), but I will miss the good things: the goals, the flashes of brilliance, and moments of inspiration. 

Best of luck to El Niño in this new chapter of his career with Liverpool.

Torres 04-July: “My heart will always be rojiblanco.”

Posted in Atletico Madrid, Fernando Torres, Liverpool, transfers | Leave a Comment »

Diego Forlan Transfers to Atlético

Posted by atleti on June 30, 2007

Atlético Madrid, Villarreal, and Forlan’s agent came to a transfer agreement today. The Uruguayan, who is currently in Venezuela for the Copa America, has agreed to join my rojiblancos on a 4-year contract.

Simply put: I think Forlan is a great signing for los rojiblancos. Yes, I will miss Torres– El Niño   has a spot in the club’s history, but he feels it is his time to move on (and frankly I do too) and I respect that. I wish him nothing but success at Liverpool.

Atlético still need to rebuild the midfield- will the club go after their long-term transfer target Ricardo Quaresma? Here’s hoping…

Forlan was born on 19-May 1979 in Montevideo, Uruguay. He began his footballing career at Independiente de Avellaneda before his massive transfer move to Manchester United in January 2002. After a fairly  unsuccessful time in England, he was sold to Villarreal in the summer 2004 where he has enjoyed three fantastic footballing seasons, which included the Pichichi award and the Golden Boot (which he shared with Thierry Henry).

[More on Atleti’s striking options once the transfer market comes to a slow-down.]

Posted in Atletico Madrid, Diego Forlan, Fernando Torres, Liverpool, transfers | 6 Comments »

Forlan & Riquelme to Atletico?

Posted by atleti on June 29, 2007

According to a few news sources in the Spanish press, Atlético are close to signing Villarreal’s Diego Forlan and Juan Roman Riquelme. As of this moment, both players are in Venezuela with their respective nations playing in the Copa America, but still very much in contact with their agents in Spain.

Although Forlan has been quoted as saying that he does not consider himself a replacement for Atlético’s much-loved Torres, it seems clear that this recent news leads many to believe that the young striker is on his way out, with England as a likely destination (all arrows point to Liverpool at the moment).

Spanish Football & Sports breaks down the possible deal in detail:  30 million in total, 20 for Forlan and 10 for Riquelme. Villarreal are purportedly keen on Atlético including Colombian international Perea in the deal as well. 

It hurts to admit this, but I’m certain Fernando Torres, our star striker, the player who has represented this club since his emergence from the youth ranks, will be moving on to greener pastures this summer. This is the harsh reality of the transfer market and the frustration in supporting Atlético.

A few days ago, President Enrique Cerezo insisted that the club have received no official bids for the lad:

“Every player has a price and if they pay the transfer clause there is nothing we can do to stop Torres leaving. But at the moment what is certain is that there is nothing going on with Torres and any other club.”


Slightly off-topic, but Atleti are apparently keen on having Liverpool include former player Luis Garcia in the deal. For his part, the 29 year old Anfield favorite has been quoted as saying:

“Liverpool are in my thoughts at the moment, but one day I would like to come back, and not to Barcelona, but to Atletico Madrid, who are always in my thoughts,” Garcia told Spanish television.”

Posted in Atletico Madrid, Fernando Torres, Liverpool | 5 Comments »

6-25 Headlines

Posted by atleti on June 25, 2007


MANCHESTER UNITED have entered the race, joining Arsenal and Liverpool, to sign Atletico Madrid’s star striker TORRES. Liverpool began negociations early last week and have been purportedly ready to include DJIBRIL CISSE with a lump sum. Atleti are disinterested in the French striker as they want to replace TORRES with FORLAN.

OPINION: No thanks, Liverpool. Suggesting that the club replace TORRES with CISSE is an insult.

Arsenal might sway Atleti with JOSE ANTONIO REYES and a lump sum of their own thanks to the Henry transfer. No thanks, Gunners, you can keep your Madrista-loving player.

Meanwhile, Atletico have agreed to sell Argentine international LUCIANO GALLETTI for 2.5 million € to OLYMPIACOS. The 27 year old midfielder is eager to begin his ‘Greek adventure’.

Posted in Atletico Madrid, Fernando Torres, transfers | Leave a Comment »

June-21 Transfer Rumors & News

Posted by atleti on June 21, 2007


It was on the English-speaking press yesterday and it has following made it to its Spanish counterpart. Atletico MAdrid’s FERNANDO TORRES is the main objective of Liverpool’s RAFAEL BENITEZ. The English club is believe to possibly offer 26 million €, but is contemplating offering LUIS GARCIA to lower the price tag. For those who don’t know, LUIS GARCIA once played for Atletico Madrid and was a supporter favorite, so the prospect of having him back is quite exciting. Unfortunately, it comes with a cost…TORRES.

The club are set to unveil a new player in a few days. His name is CLEBER SANTANA and he’s a a 25 year old attacking midfielder for Santos FC (in Brazil). I don’t know much about him, but he’s a new addition to the midfield, which is in desperate need of repair. Welcome on board, Cleber.

So far the club have signed talented RAUL GARCIA from Osasuna- a player I look forward to watching next season.

Posted in Atletico Madrid, Cleber Santana, Fernando Torres, Raul Garcia | Leave a Comment »

Fernando Torres’ Future

Posted by atleti on June 11, 2007

Last Saturday. June 9th,  Atletico Madrid lost a crucial home game to Celta Vigo, 2-3, slipping from the last UEFA spot, with only one more round left.

1 Real Madrid 73
2 Barcelona 73
3 Sevilla 71
4 Valencia 65
5 Zaragoza 59
6 Villarreal 59
7 Atletico Madrid 57
8 Recreativo 53
9 Getafe 52
10 Racing 50

Next weekend, Zaragoza play Recreativo Huelva (away) and Villarreal play Sevilla (away). Both clubs have displayed strong, brave performances in their recent games and are no doubt eager to hold on to their European spot. If Zaragoza and Villarreal win next weekend, Atletico Madrid will miss out on UEFA– a sour end to a truly disastrous season.

Such an outcome will no doubt force FERNANDO TORRES to reconsider his future plans. ‘The Kid’ is a talented player and it only hinders his career to not participate in European competition. Indeed, if he stays with Atletico Madrid will be dubbed ‘a wasted talent’ by pundits.

Many clubs have been following his progress this season, namely Liverpool. According to the Spanish media, manager Rafael Benitez will make every effort to lure TORRES to Anfield now that he has given up hope in recruiting SAMUEL ETO’O for next season’s campaign.

If Atletico Madrid do not win their final game (away to a tough OSASUNA), clubs like Liverpool will undoubtedly bid for the player.

-leading goalscorer with 14 goals
-4 assists

Posted in Atletico Madrid, Fernando Torres | Leave a Comment »