Cry babies and quitters in La Liga

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Now that the whole time-consuming football business is over with for a wee while, La Liga Loca has been able to dedicate itself to the far more important business of Spanish reality television. And the blog has had a bit of a shock.

Just a few short years ago, the greeting between the average Juan and Juanita in the Spanish street was a brief air kiss or firm handshake. Or maybe an intensely annoying back slap. The socially repressed and often sunburnt La Liga Loca will never get used to that, no matter how many years it is exiled here.

But not anymore. Like a barbeque up Mount Everest, the stakes have been raised.

Judging by the TV shows trawled through over the past few days, it seems that repeated smacky, slurpy kisses are all the rage in Spain, along with disingenuous cries of 'guapa!' or 'gorgeous!'

Smacky, slurpy kisses whip blog up into a frenzy

And this desire for extreme displays of emotion - which will be of no use to anyone when the Thunderdome Energy Wars come along - has been filtering through to the nation's footballers.

Two grown men have been blubbing like babies over the past few days when leaving their former clubs. Edmilson was the first when departing Barcelona for Villarreal - and La Liga Loca has been assured by 'culés' that the tears are not being reciprocated.

Valladolid's Joseba Llorente was the second crying culprit at the press conference given at his farewell from a club he only spent two years at.

La Liga Loca has been to both the city and stadium and could not wait to escape from Spain's equivalent of Northampton - it may not have seen the nice bits, to be fair, so was puzzled by the super striker's fey farewell.

However, Llorente seemed to have pulled himself together by the time he had arrived at the Madrigal where he'll have the chance to play Champions League football.

Edmilson dries his eyes and puts on brave face for new club           

Although Joseba was supposed to be joining Athletic Bilbao this summer, the forward said that Villarreal had shown more interest (cash) than the Basque club and that he was "proud to wear this shirt for the next four years."

Ernesto Valverde has decided to walk from the Montjuic after a two year spell - and looks rather happy doing so in the pictures published - after admitting that "the atmosphere within the club is not the best, but for me and the club, the decision is the right one."

Chain-smoking perico president, Daniel Sánchez Llibre wheezed that Valverde's decision was his own and that the knives were never out for his former underling.

"At no time did we question him. He had the board's complete support at all times," he gasped through his oxygen mask.

Javier the ham stealer is no longer the most unpopular man in Soria. The former figure of hate has been replaced by Gonzalo Arconada. Just a few short days ago, Gonzalo was the coach of Numancia and celebrating their return to the Primera after gaining a plucky promotion.

But today, Arconada looks set to jump ship, mix metaphors and fill Unai Emery's big boots at Almería for the next two seasons.

Up in Castle Greyskull, Ramón Calderón has responded to Manchester United's threat to report Real Madrid to FIFA for their antagonising antics with Cristiano Ronaldo by claiming that "our relationship with with Manchester is magnificent."

"We have only said that if the player decides to go, we'll ask if it's possible to sign him," continued Calderón, a man described by a must-be-on-crack Roberto Gómez in Marca as "the Kennedy of Real Madrid who only wants to bring joy to the Whites fans."

And La Liga Loca, for one, believes the Bernabeu bigwig, despite his comment from the same day that Cristiano Ronaldo is "a problem between the player and his team."

And a reported comment to his board at a meeting on Monday and published in Marca that "our work is done. Now we depend on the player."

And Bernd Schuster's interview from Tuesday's AS when he declared that the Portuguese player "wouldn't bring any problems" to the club.

And Bernd Schuster's comment in Friday's AS that "white suits him," when presented with a photoshopped picture of Ronaldo in a Real Madrid shirt.

Ronaldo: Not being courted by Real Madrid... honest 

Mundo Deportivo report that his board have grown tired of Calderón's constant outbursts and have told him to put a lid on it. One of those reaching for his big stick is the club's official consultant Javier Calderón, who also happens to be the president's brother.

Nice work if you can get it.