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los secretos – laughing it up with Luis

More from Los secretos!  The chapter covered in this post deals with Luis Aragonés and his unique sense of humor.  I was going to combine it with the chapter on DJ Ramos, but it’s quite long, so I’ll save DJ Ramos for its own post.  And we’re skipping the chapter dealing with Raúl and all the drama regarding whether he should have been recalled to the team or not because it’s kind of boring.

Chapter 8: Con Luis te partes

The  chapter talks about the relationship between Luis and his players, as well as his sense of humor and some of his memorable sayings.  Here are some of the favorite memories the players have with Luis.

We’ll start off with the one that will get your imagination up and running!

Xavi: one night, close to midnight, while Xavi was taking a shower, someone knocked on his door.  He thought it was Luis García, who had promised to bring him a DVD.  So Xavi quickly tried to dry off while telling Luis how annoying he was.  He opened the door naked, but no one was there.  As he started to shut the door, someone made a sudden movement and spit out, “Me cago en la hostia.  Come on, put on some underwear…”  Xavi: “Míster, I wasn’t expecting you.”  And then Aragonés sat down on Xavi’s bed and talked with him for a while.

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los secretos – the cyber café of room 422

We’re already on Chapter 6 – “The cyber café of room 422”!  I’m fully expecting another book to be released about our boys and their 2010 adventures in South Africa, so let’s see how fast we can finish this one!

This chapter is another favorite, because we really get to see how close the guys are.

Room 422

– Room 422 refers to the room of Joan Capdevila.  It was their first day at the hotel in Neustift, Austria: “when I entered the room for the first time, I thought they had given me the wrong one.  I thought it was Iker’s room, and since my last name begins with the same letter as his, they got confused.”  (The captains usually get the biggest rooms during the camps.)  So he went back down to reception, and it was confirmed that 422 was indeed his room.

– After that, he went to find Santi Cazorla to see if all the rooms were like his.  He saw that Santi’s room was much smaller.  And Santi stared open-mouthed at Joan’s room and declared, “we’re going to play pochita here at night!”

– The room was the size of an apartment:  it had an enormous salon, three bedrooms and two bathrooms.  There were a total of six beds.

– Joan’s room became known as “el Cíber” and became the place to be for the components of the team.  A visit was practically mandatory after every game, where the guys would analyze and re-analyze the games.  They also talked about life, cars, girls…

– It started with the guys playing pocha, and then others joined in to take advantage of the wi-fi connection: Silva, Navarro, Sergio, Juanito.  They would use the connection to surf the Internet, chat, talk with friends and families.  Silva said he was one of the regulars.

– Sergio: “we could be there just hanging out until two or three in the morning.  Without realizing it, at least 10 of the players would get together.  I brought my laptop with music to add to the ambiance.”

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los secretos – seating arrangements & other anecdotes

The second part of the chapter “Mofeta, Pelopo y Virus.”  Here, we find out what the “Mesa de Triana” is, who loves Actimel and who left their suitcase in a taxi cab!  But the best part is probably hearing the guys talk about each other in such glowing terms.  You really get the sense that this is a team.

Seating arrangements

– Xavi, Puyol, Iniesta, Cesc, Fernando Navarro and Sergio García made up one of the tables in the hotel in Austria.  Because Cesc loved strawberry Actimel (a yogurt-type drink) so much, the other guys would conspire to make sure that he couldn’t get one.  But in the end, they felt bad and would give him one, according to Puyol.  Puyol also founded the group “Sushi-Team” during the Eurocopa for those who loved Japanese food.  At times, Xavi, Cesc, Iniesta and Xabi would join.  Xabi: “I like Japanese food, but Puyol is obsessed with it.  Once in a while, I’ll tell him, let’s have pork chops but there was no way of changing his mind… it was agony.”

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los secretos – the nicknames

And we continue with Los secretos de la roja!  We’ve already done the first chapter, and the second chapter deals with how Spain got to the Eurocopa competition, so I’m not going to cover it here.  The third chapter is one of the best in the book, since it talks about the nicknames the guys have given to each other.  The chapter is entitled “Mofeta, Pelopo y Virus.”

The nicknames seem to have come about in three ways: from the actions of the person being nicknamed, from the physical appearance of the person being nicknamed, and from general immaturity on the part of the nicknamer.

Keep reading to see what cartoon character Dani Güiza was named after, what animal Iker apparently resembles, and what body part inspired Xavi and Albiol’s names.  And did you know that Xabi is nicknamed after a TV character and Fernando Llorente after a playing card?

Everyone has one!

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los secretos – Euro 2008 final, part I

Chapter 1: Wallas Se Va A Querer Suicidar.

The first chapter of Los Secretos de La Roja deals with the 2008 Eurocopa final against Germany.  The title of the chapter is “Wallas Se Va A Querer Suicidar” (Wallas is going to want to commit suicide).

And here are the best anecdotes from the chapter!

Before the game

– the title refers to something Luis Aragonés said to Pedro Cortés, head of the Spanish delegation, on the way to the stadium.  Luis was convinced that this was Spain’s moment, that the Germans were scared and would have to go buy a ball if they wanted to see one, and that Wallas (Ballack) would want to commit suicide and knock his head on the post out of frustration.

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video time

RTVE has a series of nice videos called “fuera de juego,” which means offside in English, and here means footballers off the field.  As you all well know, that is my favorite subject!  It was also a chance for the players to write down a promise if Spain wins the World Cup.

The following players have videos:

– Puyol: meets his favorite group, Shuarma.  We get to see Carles hesitantly tap a drum, and find out that Shuarma’s  song “Te esperaré” is the one that has influenced him the most.  It motivates him, despite being a slow song, and he listens to it before matches because it reminds him of his father.  Video here.

– Navas (along with ex-internationals Palop and Negredo): learn to dance flamenco.  Navas is the best of the bunch, check out his posture at the 0:37 mark.  Video here.

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