The Return of Raul

27 Aug

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How beautiful was the Bernabeu for Raul’s return?? So many beautiful moments were captured. The whole scene made me jealous of those who have been following the team since Raul’s time! I’m not ignorant as to what he means to the club & fans, and what he’s done for both, but unarguably this match was felt much more deeply for the Madridistas who supported him for years. With that said, get ready for a long one! There’s lots and lots of pretty.

Someone who was very excited about the match & did an awesome job of documenting the experience (before & after) was Raul’s teammate, Kasola Mohammed. Here are his pre-game pics, more of his shots at the end.

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Was anyone fangirling more than Crissy? I don’t think so. Adorable!

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Legends deserve major entrances, luckily for Raul, the Bernabeu knows how to do just that. Want an amazing banner? You got it. Want the fans spelling out your name? Double check. Want a loving welcome? It’s yours. The atmosphere was spectacular and even for someone like me, who hasn’t followed Raul’s whole career, I was in awe & the reception gave me goosebumps.

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Capi to Capi, passing off the armband.

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The first half kicked off with Raul getting his Blanco on and shortly after that, he got his goal scoring on for his former home-side. Twenty three minutes in and we had our Raul goal! A Di Maria assist and a gorgey left-footed POW.

Raul’s opener was the only goal scored in the first half, makes me wonder if the boys made a ‘no-scoring while Raul is captain’ pact. Maybe..maybe not..but it was nice for him to have the spotlight to himself and run the whole damn show for the first half!

Remember Cristiano’s fangirling face during warm ups? Well it got even better at halftime. Cris wanted Raul’s jersey and he got that thang. Bonus, we got to compare the two’s tans…take it off, take it off.

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Most of the lineup was swapped at the start of the 2nd half, in came DLo, Pepe, Benz, Ozi, Carvajal, Jese, Morata, Isco, & Mateos. Raul joined Al-Sadd and it was time for the goals to keep rolling in. First up was Isco! In the 59th minute, he scored his second ever header. I said it before, bless the boy’s forehead, keep the goals comin’!

In the 79th minute, Carvajal was brought down in the area & Benz was up for taking the penalty. He shoots, he scores! Benz has been our main scoring man since Ancelotti arrived, imagine how much more he would score if he shed the extra weight he’s carrying……and by weight, I mean the extra bit growing out of his scalp. Tick tock, Benz, tick tock. Le moment est venu…le snip snip, oui oui.

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The final two goals came right after one another & both were scored by young’n, Jese. His first scored in the 82nd minute and it was a powerful one. When you’re playing with a legend, you bring your A game!

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Six minutes later, Jese scored the last goal of the night. With the help of big defensive mistakes, Jese ran his way around Al-Sadd’s keeper & two defenders to pop his second goal in.

Real Madrid CF v Al-Sadd - Santiago Bernabeu Trophy

Real Madrid CF v Al-Sadd - Santiago Bernabeu Trophy

More of Kasola’s photos….his look is a cross between Benz & Sergio’s disasters, isn’t it?

All the Raul hoopla, it was easy to forget that this was a trophy match! RM took the win so of course they got the big ol’ thing that looks like it was run over by a bus….Al-Sadd got it’s mini me.

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Seeing Guti in fan mode almost broke me! I’m sure he was reminiscing like crazy as he watched and was wishing he could be on the pitch. 😦 I guess we don’t need to feel sorry for Guti though, apparently he’s getting back in it & taking over an assistant coach position for RM’s Under-12 team! He’s supposed to start tomorrow, I think coaching the littles will be good for him. Who knows, he may make his way up to coaching the first team someday. Good luck, Guti!

Raul made the most of his final minutes in the Bernabeu, thanking the fans, shedding a few tears, and humbly kissing the pitch. The boys let him say his farewells, but they weren’t going to let him go before giving him a few good tosses in the air! I always get nervous when they do this (and not just because Sergio is involved) the person being tossed always gets some major air. I know I wouldn’t trust anyone to do this to me, ground pounds are one of the things I do best.

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Gracias Raul!

Pics, Gifs, & Video via gfsports, maarchisio, xiaoyao0620, sr4oldpics, santikasola, tfortravis, idratherbehome, concretar, withbalerion, dancingwithpipita, realsmadrid, & megustaelfutbol.

HALA MADRID!!!

-Maisougio

8 Responses to “The Return of Raul”

  1. number1barcachick August 27, 2013 at 6:46 pm #

    awww raul and guti 🙂 love those two

  2. Mehreh August 27, 2013 at 7:01 pm #

    when iker passed off the armband, i gently lost it into my shoulder. and then cris’ face when raul gave him the 7 jersey. and then sergio scooping raul up like he’s a child and tossing him in the air. and then raul cried. it was just such an emotional, somehow cathartic moment for him to get his farewell game.

    just lovely to see a legend in his element.

  3. mygypsyspirit August 27, 2013 at 7:22 pm #

    I’m just going to sit here crying again….

  4. Laura Witrak August 27, 2013 at 7:40 pm #

    I have been only following RM since ’10 and yeah, Lozil, you said it perfectly – I kind of feel badly (note: kind of) not following them during the peak of the Galactico years! And Raul!

    • headbandsandheartbreak August 27, 2013 at 7:53 pm #

      Oh that wasn’t me – it was Maisougio who wrote this post. 🙂 There’s two of us. We always sign our posts at the bottom (well, except for the Drools which I do).

  5. CinematiqueChic August 27, 2013 at 8:06 pm #

    The tears! I sobbed absolute buckets when Iker handed off the armband. And it wouldn’t be at all surprising if during the first half the rest of the team didn’t try to score – they certainly did their best to make sure Raúl was the one who got the honor.

  6. Katie Ann August 27, 2013 at 8:26 pm #

    I love so many things in this post. I love everything about Raul, of course. The picture of him being tossed into the air is the desktop background on his work computer (sidenote: I’ve been thrown into the air like that, and it’s super fun, but it’s definitely a little scary!!!) And I love little Isco scoring those headers. And Guti! Guti’s one of the first players I really grew to love when I started following Madrid. He’ll be great coaching the kiddies.

  7. jellyace August 28, 2013 at 1:48 pm #

    I love the foto de familia of the two opposing teams. Every match should start that way.

    I was amazed at the 16 trophies won during Raul’s years. Seeing them all displayed on the pitch made me wonder if sometime in the far future, if they do a similar tribute to Sergio Ramos, will they display the famous mangled, dropped from the bus Copa del Rey?

    Raul was given the entire royal treatment and he was just so gracious and joyful! This night was the best and most touching of all Real Madrid fetes. Thank you for all the visuals on this post. It’s hard to see clearly when your eyes are tearing up.

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