Catalan press pour scorn on Madridista conspiracy talk, as Jose wins pointless prize

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“It’s a scandal!” screamed headline on the front cover of Tuesday’s Mundo Deportivo, alongside a picture of a grinning Leo Messi sitting on his backside.

“What’s a scandal?” thought La Liga Loca, trying to put itself into the heads of the MD journalists - not a fantastic place to be, even for a few seconds.

After shivering uncontrollably in a corner for ten minutes after the experience, the blog gave up and looked inside the paper to see what was cooking MD’s chicken just two days into the traditional whack-job fest in the Spanish media calendar - the international break.

The paper has been returning to the scene of what they see as a crime committed against the Catalan collective against Sporting - a ‘scandalous’ penalty that apparently should have been awarded to Leo Messi. MD has used this refereeing failure to throw the ‘Villarato’ accusation back into the howling faces of the Madridista press.

For those lucky enough not to know, the ‘Villarato’ is the rather tiresome theory cooked up by AS that the Spanish FA president, Angel María Villar, has been working behind the scenes both in Spain and with UEFA to make sure Pep’s Dream Boys come out on top at every opportunity.

To counter this theory - one which a large chunk of the Madrid fanbase actually believe - the paper notes that since Florentino Pérez came to power two years ago, Madrid have been awarded 23 penalties to Barça’s paltry eight.

MD's J.M. Artells, writing in Tuesday's edition, fumes that Mourinho - of course - is behind the current anti-Barça nature of the league’s referees. “It seems very clear Mourinho with his noisy manner is winning the media battle over referees.

“The Portuguese still has his punishment outstanding for the finger poke at Tito Vilanova,” continued Artells.

Over in Capital City, Marca have used the pause in domestic football hostilities to celebrate their annual awards based on last season’s performances - prizes which used to be mostly handed to Raúl before the forward fell out of favour with Florentino Pérez and was shunted on to Schalke. 

In an epic 27-page feature, Marca details how Cristiano Ronaldo won the top scorer award and Alvaro Negredo picked up the best Spanish striker prize. The Barça pair of Víctor Valdés and Leo Messi won the trinkets for best keeper and player respectively.

No arguments there from LLL. But what was slightly eye-opening - no Tito Vilanova pun intended - was that José Mourinho managed to win the best Primera manager title thanks to a superior Marca-awarded points total over the season, despite Pep Guardiola’s landing the double for his team. And winning the Primera itself.

“He won everyone over with his charisma” gasped the paper on the Madrid manager who was “elegantly dressed,” for the affair.

“I’m surprised I won,” said Mourinho, who was not alone in this, “as every time I look at the paper on Monday I see that I only get one point.”

How apt. An apparently near pointless Mourinho winning an extremely pointless prize...