PF Juan Mata is on the cover of the May issue of magazine Minuto 116 (can you guess what the name of the magazine – Minute 116 – refers to?), and inside, over half of the magazine is dedicated to him! There’s a great (and super, super long) interview with Juanín, a piece written by his sister PF Paula Mata, an interview with his grandfather, and his friends’ views of him, among other articles. All of them paint a picture of a footballer who is also a normal person, in addition to being funny, humble, and well, also muy guapo.
Remember how during the last concentración, several of the boys did a photoshoot with Pedro del Hierro, the firm that is responsible for dressing the national team? Well here we have some of the (colorful) results, courtesy of XL Semanal! Plus the boys talk about their own styles…
On the second day of the concentración, the players were made available to the press, and all of them were in high demand with journalists. Sergio Ramos was especially sought after, as he will be joining a select club of players after playing in his 100th game for Spain against Finland. Here’s a sampling of the interviews. We’ll start off with Sergio and Marca. The pictures – showing Sergio unveiling and posing with a huge blown up cover – are priceless.
One hundred games, 100 sensations. How would you sum up this long journey with La Roja?
It was a dream come true the day of my debut against China in Salamanca. And then remaining part of this team was the most complicated part. I would keep the three titles, because the successes are the cherry on top. I believe having two Eurocopas and one World Cup at my age is hard to beat. But I hope that the team can continue to win titles.
What does the shirt mean to you?
Strength, compromise, values, everything.
The concentración for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Finland and France began on Tuesday morning. Surprisingly, as the players began arriving, there were no major fashion failures (emphasis on the word “major” since some of the players, in the simple act of choosing their own clothes, commit fashion crimes).
Spain takes on Uruguay tonight in Doha, Qatar (19h)! This game will most likely be Carles Puyol’s 100th, which will come 12 years after his debut on Nov. 15, 2000, and which will make him the seventh Spaniard to reach that number (after Iker, Zubi, Xavi, Xabi, Raúl and Fernando Torres).
Continuing with the celebration in Madrid…
The goddess was wearing her best Spain finery for this occasion. I wonder if Xabi was already too drunk at this point to remember how drunk he had been the last time he was here, and how amusing that was for all of us?
Here is how the rest of the day of celebration in Madrid went: the plane ride from Kiev to Madrid, meeting with the king (no one told the elephant joke) and the slow descent into mass drunkenness, starting on the open air bus.
I’m skipping a bit ahead, since I haven’t posted about the parade in Madrid or the party at Cibeles yet, but The Pepe Show is always the highlight of the celebration, no? Spain has to keep winning, so we can get to experience the sheer genius of Pepe Reina every couple of years.
I love what the players were doing here to usher Pepe to the center of the stage!