Ronaldo helps to heal Spain's Clásico scars

It’s been a long time since LLL has had a bit of a blub - at least one it's willing to admit to - but a tear of joy rolled down the blog’s face on Monday when it saw that a temporary truce had been called between fans of Barcelona and Real Madrid in their ongoing feud over who will be crowned kings of the universe.

The figure to unite these two sets of mud-slinging supporters is someone who normally divides them - a certain Cristiano Ronaldo, the either devilish or divine prince of Portugal, depending on which side your bran is salted. Barcelona-based Sport sums up what the mood will be like in Spain on Wednesday evening, with a headline reporting that “Culés and Madridistas are united to get rid of Ronaldo,” during the European Championship clash, with the paper seeing the potentially page-turning encounter between these two Iberian rivals as mirroring that between Barcelona and Real Madrid - pressure and possession facing up to a cracking counter-attack. But without the eye-poking, perhaps.

Unsurprisingly, the Spain players are being asked about how they are going to deal with the currently rampant Ronaldo. LLL suspects Sergio Ramos has something nasty lined-up for his teammate involving a wedgie. Xavi Hernández has revealed that “we’ll try to cover him so Ronaldo doesn’t feel comfortable and cannot turn around.” Meanwhile, Iker Casillas is a little worried about the direction that Ronaldo’s goal-bound balls will be traveling in. “The ball does strange things, not to the extremes of the Jabulani but if you hit it full-on with power it always has a strange trajectory which tricks you,” says the Spanish captain.

While Sport is busy revealing what Spanish fans are thinking in relation to Ronaldo, both Marca and AS are reveling in the fact that there are ten Real Madrid players in the semi-finals, and that seven goals in the competition have been scored by four of these footballers. With enough Madrid players scattered about in both camps on Wednesday night, the match could be a win-win affair for one half of the Spanish football media.


Unfortunately for the second time during these European Championships, Spanish football and the players in Poland have been rocked by another tragic event. The first was the death of former Sporting coach, Manuel Preciado, from a heart attack. The second was Betis player, Miki Roqué, losing his fight against cancer.

The former Liverpool defender had been battling cancer of the pelvis since March 2011, but passed away on Sunday at the age of just 23. “It’s difficult to come to terms with how God could take away someone so young,” said Betis president, Miguel Guillén. “It’s so difficult to express the sense of emptiness and rage,” were the thoughts of Betis coach, Pepe Mel. “I was his manager and friend and I learned from him. Until the next time Miki, as every Sunday this season my first thoughts will be of you.”