From the Bernabeu to Perez. Real again changes the strategy in the hope to conquer the world

Today few people know about this, but the fate of real Madrid are seriously affected by the events of the match against Barcelona in 1943. Until that time, the confrontation between the “Blancos” and “blaugranas” were not of such a serious and irreconcilable status as it is today. Yes, in Catalonia and then a perceived official Madrid “hostility”, but on the football field any excessive emotions were not.

In 1939, Spain had established the dictatorship of General Francisco Franco, who, with a special “thrill” refers to the rebellious regions, like Catalonia, and was an avid fan of capital’s “real”. And four years later the country erupted real football scandal. In the first semifinal match on the Cup of the Generalissimo (the name from 1939 to 1976 he carried the Cup of Spain) “Barcelona” in his field defeated the “real” with the account 3:0. After the game the Madrid delegation was furious, but not so much on account of the match, how much of the “hospitable” reception in Catalonia. Throughout the game, “Blancos” were booed and shouted various curses.

When information about the incident in Barcelona came to Franko, he was furious and, according to Spanish historians, promised the Catalans “worthy reception” in Madrid. The return match turned into a real farce, and his protagonists were not football players, the military with the “gray faces” that before the game “firmly dealt” with by the arbitrators, and the suspension literally forced back on the field the players of “Barcelona”. All due to the fact that after the first half the score was 8:0 in favor of “real”, and the final result was 11:1… These events have very little to do with soccer, led to the departure from their posts of the presidents of both clubs, Enrique pineyro left from Barcelona, and his colleague Antonio Santos Peralba left the post of Director of real Madrid.

The latter event led to the election of the President of the club of Madrid now notorious Santiago Bernabeu, who remained at the post of the boss of the “Blancos” until his death in 1978. This man, a veteran of the civil war (fought on the side of Franco), has dramatically changed the fate of real Madrid. According to the memoirs of many, the Bernabeu was the real dreamer in the 30-ies of the last century was perceived Santiago for the construction of a modern 100-seat stadium for real Madrid. In the embodiment of this project, they needed about $ 30 million pesetas, which was an absolutely unprecedented sum for Spanish football clubs of the time.

However, the Bernabeu was clearly defined: to achieve total domination in Spain and Europe, real Madrid just need a new stadium, the construction of which will eventually be repaid by revenue from ticket sales. Actually, the fact that the “Blancos” will play on the luxurious modern arena in front of the eyes of thousands of audience had, according to the plans of the Bernabeu, to facilitate the involvement of the ranks of the “real” top players of the time.

14 Dec 1947 in Madrid opened “Nuevo Chamartin”, which after 8 years against the wishes of the President of real Madrid, was renamed the “Santiago Bernabeu”. In 1954 the arena was brought to a fantastic 102 thousand spectators, and in almost every game the stadium was Packed to capacity, because fans were eager to see the best players of his time – Alfredo Di Stefano, Raymond Kopa, Ferenc Puskas and others. Plan the Bernabeu started to work perfectly, bringing a real good profit, and helping the team to make seven-mile steps towards universal acceptance.

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After almost half a century, in the summer of 2000, in the “Real world” was held the next presidential elections, which were won by Florentino Perez. From the first day, the head of the Madrid club, construction magnate Perez has armed tactics of the Santiago Bernabeu. No, Florentino did not surprise the world with a huge capacity of the new stadium, moreover, at the time such arenas boast could have very many clubs on the continent. However, the tactics of the leadership was clearly caught Peres, who wanted to make a “real” first and, if possible, the main global football brand.

That is why one of the first appointments of Perez at Real Madrid was Jose angel Sanchez – the man whose name at that time was completely unknown in the Spanish football circles, and now a inexperienced fans probably could not previously hear. Jose angel Sanchez before joining real Madrid for the post of marketing Director, was the CEO of Sega in southern Europe. This person was destined to become a pioneer of a new philosophy of real Madrid, which is to realize the wished Florentino Perez. Together, these two got in a football team, “Blancos” such legendary figures of that time as Luis Figo, Zinedine Zidane, Ronaldo, David Beckham, thanks to the signings which real Madrid in the press began to call not differently, as “Galacticos”, which allowed the Madrid club to become the most recognizable and colorful football brand in the world.

Sam Sanchez is an avid fan of the film industry and decided to adopt several commercial solutions. In particular, the marketing Department of real Madrid was instructed to investigate the success of the cartoon “the lion King”, the creation of which Walt Disney Pictures spent $ 45 million, and after a year and a half has managed to earn about 1.5 billion, not only at the box office, but also on the implementation of various paraphernalia. In other words, the cartoon has become a cult for the society that helped its creators to earn as follows. Real Madrid have adopted this idea and started to sell not only t-shirts with the names of their stars, but also a different variety of products – from cups and key chains to watches and wallets…

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Returning to the post of President of real Madrid in the summer of 2009, Florentino Perez has continued his policy of “Galacticos”, spending in the first transfer window, more than 200 million euros for the purchase of such stars as Kaka, Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema. But then huge spending stopped, and “real” is extremely episodic threw huge money in the market to remain in focus – Gareth bale in 2013 (101 million euros), James Rodriguez in 2014 (€75 million) and Eden hazard in 2019 (100 million euros).

In recent years, we can say that “real” significantly cut spending on the transfer market. And, ironically, this period was one of the most successful in club history! At least, from 2016 to 2018 real Madrid three times in a row won the Champions League, setting unbelievable to the modern football, with its enormous competitiveness achievement.

So gradually we, in fact, come to today’s situation where “real” begins to manifest a completely different line of conduct on the transfer market. Over the past few years, Florentino Perez and Jose angel Sanchez, who is already on a post of the General Director of “Blancos” and personally negotiating the transfer of a player, focused on attracting young players, mostly from South America, hoping to find a new Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo and, more importantly, to have time to get them from under the nose of vigilant competitors.

Thus in the camp of real Madrid turned out to be promising Brazilians Vinicius Junior and Rodrigo, for each real paid 45 million euros. Exactly the same logic guided the bosses of real Madrid, when in January announced the purchase of 30 million euros Prodigy Flamengo Reinier.

Perez and Sanchez, obviously still not forgiven myself for what at the time was unable to attract into the ranks of “real” Neymar and Kilian Mbappe, when the Madrid club had the chance. However, of those failures of the leaders of the “Blancos” have drawn conclusions and now they have a different strategy to play in advance and to pay 30-50 million euros for young talent that scouts and experts characterize as the “future of football”, even if they do not have time to spend in senior football and one full season. In the “Real world” I think it’s much better than to wait until these players come out on top-level in other clubs and then “biting elbows”, or to pay three or four times more.

However, the new strategy of “real” also has a very tangible economic explanation. The club of Madrid is still one of the key soccer brands in the world, but does not have the petrodollars, as the same “Paris Saint-Germain or Manchester city.” Moreover, last year, real Madrid started the beginning of reconstruction of “Santiago Bernabeu stadium”, which will run until 2023, and according to preliminary estimates will cost the Treasury of the club to more than 500 million euros. For this reason, the current “Blancos” has again altered its strategy of predators, and now are trying to play in advance, to intercept most of the “diamonds” world football even when they are in adolescence.

However, the new philosophy of “real” is extremely risky for a club of this caliber. It is important to understand that young players need more time for adaptation and development in senior football, and this attitude was never “trick” the Madrid top club. A striking example of this is Martin Ødegaard – the Norwegian, who at age 16 was in the “Real world”, but for several years I managed to pick up a lot of criticism. Just now, brilliant playing for real Sociedad on loan, the Youngster managed to finally stop the flow of negativity and make most analysts and fans finally believe in its bright future on “Santiago Bernabeu”, where Martin will probably be back already next summer.

Only time will tell whether the new course “real” as successful as the former. Do not forget that the world football produces players of the caliber of Messi or Ronaldo every few generations filling the vacuum expectations of the persona of Mario Balotelli, who is endowed with talent, but are completely unable to realize it at least in half. One thing is certain: real Madrid again trying to beat the competition by using a non-standard approach. If it’ll work or not, who knows, however, such ideas and intentions certainly were would prefer to don Santiago Bernabeu…

Alexey SLEPCHENKO

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