I guess I’ve already said that these off days between Spain’s matches are way too long. And if those days don’t even have any football at all, they feel like 48 hours long. The whole media centre becomes a large discussion forum in which journalists, like fans posting comments, argue endlessly about Torres vs. Llorente, one vs. two defensive midfielders, or Iker vs. any of the other two goalies. And the fact is that Del Bosque has already made up his mind on every single one of those issues, so we’re pretty much wasting time and energy discussing all this.
In order to kill this almost wasted time doing something useful to humankind, myself and other two journalists have now decided to create a prize for the most fun moment to make an impression of during this whole World Cup. We have three candidates so far:
1) Maradona’s press conference after Argentina qualified for the World Cup, during which he told the Argentinean media to, well, I can’t write it, but you do remember, right? Technically it is not a World Cup moment, but it never ever gets old to repeat Maradona’s words verbatim, so we agreed to allow its inclusion.
2) Cristiano Ronaldo takes a free kick. A great impersonation has to include every single detail, from the extra tight jersey to the three steps backwards plus the sideways one, the look of complete disbelief after the ball goes 50 metres over, and the glorious half litre of saliva spat on a cameraman (ok, I know this was something unrelated, but allow me to take some liberties to make this more fun, please)
3) Heinze dives pretending to have been fouled, rolls over as though he’d been shot in his back, and then jumps quickly on his feet and starts screaming at the ref after he judiciously ignores the play. Gabriel Ivan Heinze is a fantastic target for impersonations, as he argues with referees just after 15 seconds of every match as though he’d been getting bad calls for 120 minutes. Important note: your skin has to look orange.
Please, let us know your opinion.
Anyway, let’s come back to the national team. The Spanish gaffer is doing well with the media, keeping the team focused on Paraguay by avoiding every single question about a potential semi-finals match. You would expect that, after Spain’s shocking defeat against the US in the Confed Cup, the Spanish media would have learnt the lesson, but the prospect of a semi-final encounter with either Argentina or Germany is too mouth-watering for your average journo to refrain himself from speculating and asking thousands of questions about it.
Today’s press conference was the usual boring interchange of standard questions and even more standard answers. Llorente and Pedrito participated, and the latter showed his young age by saying absolutely nothing of interest. The canario seemed even scared to answer. Llorente, older and more seasoned, took advantage of his great performance against Portugal to state that ‘I am ready to start’. Not a chance, my friend.
Against Paraguay, Del Bosque will almost surely field the same line-up that started against the lusitanos: Casillas; Ramos, Piqué, Puyol, Capdevila; X Alonso, Busquets; Iniesta, Xavi, Villa; and Torres up front. Not that much news, you see…