La Liga Loca’s Quotes of the Year - Part One

Our very own Tim Stannard runs through some of the more questionable quotations from the last 12 months of Spanish football...

January

“I’ve got to look for players who won’t let me down...some of them aren’t going to cheat me anymore” - Atlético boss, Quique Sánchez Flores, whips himself into a heck of a huff after a 3-0 defeat to Recreativo in the Copa del Rey with a message he was to repeat several times during the year. And will continue to do so until his inevitable firing sometime in February.

“Palma is a city where people live very comfortably. If we play at five o'clock people are still eating their paella. If we play at night, it’s too cold and people watch it on TV. If we play at seven, then it’s too humid” - the then Mallorca boss, Gregorio Manzano, laments the fact that only 37 spectators bothered to watch his side’s wonderful campaign in the Ono Estadi which saw a fifth-placed finish.

“I don’t care if the dates of the centenary are correct or not” - Spanish FA president, Angel Villar, wasn’t going to let the fact that his organisation celebrated their 75th birthday 21 years ago get in the way of a series of monumental lunches to commemorate the non-occasion.

“This is the worst moment of my career” - Robert Pires hadn’t even heard the words “Aston Villa”, “transfer” and “living in a hotel in Birmingham” when he was lamenting his lot during some dark days on the fringes at Villarreal.

“We may have seen a red but anyone who knows anything about football understands this isn’t a red” - Cristiano Ronaldo puts the blame entirely on Málaga defender, Patrick Mtiliga, for his sending off after thoughtlessly interrupting the path of the Real Madrid’s player’s elbow with his nose which was subsequently broken.

“Florentino Pérez is kind, cares about the fans, has promoted his stars well and kept confidence in the coach. It’s Pellegrini who is the disgrace” - Marca kick off their charming and still ongoing attack on the former Real Madrid manager which sparked the “side once lead by Manuel Pellegrini lose to Barça” spoof headline after November’s 5-0 defeat.

February

“I can’t stand those who doubt my professionalism” - Guti is quite right to take such a stance in a year when the maverick midfielder claimed he was staying at Real Madrid, wanted to play in Italy and England before choosing Turkey to continue his football adventure and drive his car into the sides of buses after one too many. Allegedly. 

“He has to be cooked slowly, not shoved in the microwave” Getafe manager, Míchel, opines on the future for the then Racing striker and Spain’s most promising young talent, Sergio Canales, who has since found himself stuffed into a freezer after his move to Real Madrid.

Canales: pierce film lid, microwave for 10 mins, leave to stand...

“I apologise to the fans. They don’t deserve this emotional roller coaster” - Poor Quique Sánchez is back with all the huffing after 0-2 home defeat to Málaga in the league.

“The relationship between club and fans is worthy of a doctoral thesis” - Sevilla president José María del Nido contemplates the up-and-down nature of the Sánchez Pizjuán crowd, although the root causes of the fans’ dislike of Alvaro Negredo could be explained by a slightly slow seven-year-old with a crayon. 

“This is scientific certification that Madrid should be two points better off” - Marca director and winner of LLL’s ‘Idiot of the Year’ award once again, Eduardo Inda, concludes that a giant refereeing conspiracy was assisting Barça in an open letter to Pep Guardiola.

“Madrid start with a nine point advantage. The three they earn at the Vicente Calderón, the three they win against us at the Bernabeu and the three that Barcelona leave here” - Atleti president, Enrique Cerezo, details the charitable contributions made by his club to Real Madrid year on year after a 2-1 win over Barça. 

March

“Censors and the media cave will not twist or dilute our opinions and shared objectives” - Joan ‘Joan’ Laporta comes up with a typically nutty, paranoid reason to join Twitter and Facebook away from the usual excuse of wanting to willfully ignore actual human beings around you by hammering away on a Crackberry.

“Things went badly at Espanyol and Javier Clemente. He told me to find another team as he didn’t like small players” - Albert Crusat leaves the world wondering if there’s a parallel world with the former Spain manager managing a Barcelona side with Xavi and Messi on the bench and Javier Arizmendi up front

“I have the support of the players and the club” - Wonderfully optimistic - but probably sarcastic - words from Manuel Pellegrini after Real Madrid’s traditional early doors ejection from the Champions League after defeat to Lyon.

“You need to bring a shot gun. ‘Bang, bang’ and that’s it” - Former Mallorca manager Gregorio Manzano with an tactic on stopping Leo Messi that LLL is quite sure is illegal in Spain. Except in some remote parts of Andalusia during harsh winters perhaps.

“We’ve got ourselves into this situation and it’s us who have to get us out of it” - The then Sevilla boss, Manolo Jiménez was half right on his prediction before a 1-1 draw against Xerez meant that it was everyone else was forced to dig themselves out of the hole he had lead them into due to his immediate sacking.

April

“I went to an interview. I had to as my parents made me so I wouldn’t be hanging around the house” - Villarreal midfielder, Cani, reveals how close he came to an alternative career of blocking supermarket aisles with stock trolleys before he was eventually saved by Zaragoza.

Cani: "Clean up in aisle seven..."

“My results are lamentable. They are enough to get a coach sacked” - Onésimo Sánchez showed he may have more potential as a hiring and firing president in la Liga than a manager having being sacked as coach of Valladolid just a day after his observation.

“The match delegate for Madrid has to think seriously about the possibility of offering two balls to the ref: one for the game and one for Ronaldo” - Roberto Palomar writing in Marca on Cristiano’s tendency to hog the ball as much as he does the mirror.

“I prefer spending 14 hours on a bus to play in the Champions League than watch the semis on TV” - Pep Guardiola with a wonderfully barbed...er....barb thrown in the direction of the Spanish capital ahead of a lengthy volcano-inspired bus trip to Italy to face Inter Milan.

“I’m staying at Getafe, I’ve got a five year contract and the project the president offered me really excites me” - Pedro León was so thrilled by the future at the Coliseum that he moved to Real Madrid three months later.

May

“There will be 32,000 people there and if we count every Sevilla fan as three, we are 96,000” - José Maria del Nido becomes the first president in la Liga history to overreport the match attendance before the Copa del Rey final against Atlético Madrid.

“For me, Guti is gone. I read what he said and that’s what counts. He said goodbye to the fans, did a lap of the pitch” - Mourinho pretty much stamps on any last, lingering chance of Guti staying on at the Santiago Bernabeu. And then pees on it for good measure.

“It is one of the most important elements in a footballer’s recovery” - Neither hot women, rest, nor a comfy bed to take a siesta in were the concerns of Marca during the World Cup in South Africa, instead it was issues over the importation of the team’s Jamon Serrano. 

If Pep doesn’t want Ibra then I’d recommend he went to a mental hospital” - Zlatan’s agent Mino Raiola signals the beginning of the end of his client’s short-lived stay at the Camp Nou, or maybe even the end of the beginning...or the middle of the end. 

June

“Sometimes (the decisions) will be unpopular and unpleasant but they’ve got to be taken” - Valencia president, Manuel Llorente talking about the sale of David Villa to Barcelona, although LLL suspects he is alluding to the purchase of serial chance-blower, Roberto Soldado.

“It’s contradictory to have the logo of UNICEF and sign agreements with Uzbekistan” - The then Barcelona presidential candidate, Sandro Rosell, still with his business morals intact during a wonderfully bitchy election campaign.

“With the situation we’re in and with the stress, sometimes your body doesn’t do what you want ask it. But not me. I disconnect well enough” - Getafe president, Angel Torres, makes everyone feel a touch icky claiming there were no downstairs problems in his love-house no matter how badly his team were doing.

La Liga Loca's Quotes of the Year - Part Two

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