Barmy Barça boss & rueful Real reject

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For a wee while, La Liga Loca was concerned that incoming Barcelona president Sandro Rosell was going to be a tad bland.

The blog felt in its stagnant waters that he would be the type to spend hours talking about synergies and delivering speeches on business strategies, like a Harvard-trained suit receiving rapturous applause for suggesting that his company should try doing things "cheaper, better and faster" - thus controversially banishing the "expensive, crap and slow" policy of the ancient regime, perhaps. 

Fortunately, Rosell looks like being just as entertaining and unhinged as Joan Laporta, with the power of being the Camp Nou King having gone to his head within 6.4 seconds of winning July's presidential election.

With the football situation at the club being in a fairly rosy condition despite the return of Alexander Hleb, Rosell's strategy in the opening weeks of his tenure has instead focused on smearing other aspects of his predecessor's legacy with donkey-doo. Oh, and failing to sign Cesc Fabregas - although that is Laporta's fault too, apparently: "Arsenal told us that they did not want to negotiate with us for Cesc because of how they were treated by the previous board," complained Rosell in AS.

One of Sandro's first mean-spirited acts was to remove Johan Cruyff's title of President of Honour, given to him in the final months of Laporta's reign, and force the Dutchman to hand over his special pin at the club's reception desk. "No-one wants a title that doesn't exist," explained Rosell.

The Barcelona bigwig then claimed that Laporta had left the club without a pot to do anything in, with the very, very, very public announcement that it would be looking for a €155m loan from Big Tony to cover June's salaries and buy Sevilla full-back Adriano. "There weren't €11m in profits, nor €100m to spend," grumbled Rosell.

"Ah hello Adriano... Lend us a tenner?"

With LLL always enjoying a good groundless conspiracy theory, the blog now suspects that Rosell is setting up the narrative that the club is dangerously broke, and thus will need to ditch UNICEF and the longstanding policy of intense smugness by allowing advertising on the players' shirts. Considering the Barça president's background in sports marketing, finding the right candidate shouldn't be too much of a stretch, LLL imagines.

Meanwhile, at Castle Greyskull…
In Marca's very peculiar world it seems that things have not changed at the Santiago Bernabeu since LLL fled the country for a while to dodge the World Cup clean-up operation. José Mourinho remains some kind of deity for the simple reason that he turns up for work, talks to his players and has proven his outstanding professionalism by starting training 20 minutes earlier at 9.10 every morning.

At the same time, former manager Manuel Pellegrini continues to be Satan's sorriest spawn after an interview given in the Chilean press where he defended his year in charge at Castle Greyskull. Pellegrini confirmed what pretty much everyone knew already by revealing that construction king Florentino Pérez still harbours the same love and affection for managers as he does for undeveloped land.

The Third-Choice Chilean claimed that he had neither "a vote nor a voice" at Madrid and that there was "a difference of opinion" over the sales of Arjen Robben and Wesley Sneijder shortly before the start of last season. "It doesn't help anyone to have an orchestra with the 10 best guitarists if it doesn't have a pianist," noted Pellegrini, who has clearly never been to a Mogwai concert.

The Great Leader's honour having been smutted, Marca was forced to come out on the attack with a tremendously rude editorial rather harshly calling Pellegrini's words "cowardly and treacherous."

In other news…
LLL was planning to end this round-up with something on the demise of Darth Manuel de Lopera's reign as overlord of Real Betis. Failure to win promotion from the second division saw fan pressure finally forcing the club's spooky owner to opt for a quiet life and sell a controlling 51% portion of the club's shareholding to a consortium lead by Luis Oliver.

A new manager was duly appointed and all seemed well – right up until a judge blocked the sale, with the suspicion that pretty much anything to do with "Betis" and "finance" was highly dodgy and worthy of a thorough probing.

"Is there anything guaranteed at Betis?" sighed Oliver. "I was the owner yesterday and look where I am now." He had obviously failed to heed the signing-in-blood aspect of the handover...

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