Archive for Real Madrid

Real madness

Posted in Kids, Travel with tags , on August 7, 2010 by xi'an

Since Real Madrid was playing in San Francisco the day we arrived there, my son pressured me once again to go to the game, as we had missed Real Madrid by a few days in Washington D.C. last year… I flew in late so we arrived by car near the stadium at about 7:30 for the 8pm game. The parking setting was so poorly organised that it took us more than 30 minutes to get parked. And then we strucked madness: a few thousand people had booked their ticket as we did on-line and were expecting as us to get their ticket from the booths at the entrance of the stadium. The setting of the delivery was so poor that it was clear we were not going to get our tickets, even for the second half of the game. I was also worried about the tension in the crowd. While most people were calm and seemed resigned to missing the game, some people were truly vociferous and, apart from a few policemen, there was no security to be seen.

When Real Madrid scored the first goal, the tension went up one step as all people outside presumably had valid tickets and should have been inside. At the half-time break, we had not moved by more than 5 meters towards the booths and I was sure this was over. However, the police then made an announcement from a van and, despite the whistles, shouts,  and boos, it soon became clear that the stadium was going to open the doors to everyone for the second half! After a rather short scuffle at the entrance, a we did indeed enter and sat at a nice position behind the Real Madrid goal posts to watch the other half of the game. Where Real Madrid scored twice again. Overall, I was rather surprised at the lack of security outside and inside the stadium, when compared with the huge deployments at European stadiums! Of course, this was an exhibition game and it is difficult to think of Real Madrid ultras flying all the way to San Francisco, but still with such a large crowd of more than 45,000 people things could have degenerated very quickly…

Real Madrid for real

Posted in Kids, Travel with tags , , on November 2, 2009 by xi'an

Being in Madrid during a game of Real Madrid means I “had to” take my son to the game. I rather dreaded the evening but it ended up being quite smooth and cool with no real tension from the surrounding crowd. (The most extreme fans were parked far far away!)

p1030327In fact, on a general basis, I strongly dislike huge crowds because of the inherent irrational behaviour of large groups of people. The Santiago Bernabeu stadium was not completely full on Saturday tonight but there were still a lot of people! p1030330

Real Madrid was playing against Getaffe (which incidentally is the suburb of Madrid where Universidad Carlos III is located, a place where I taught Monte Carlo Statistical Method last time I came to Madrid!). The two teams looked (to me) rather unevenly matched, judging from the number of balls recovered by Real Madrid during the game, which ended up as 2-0 in favour of Real Madrid.  This despite a red card expulsion of one Real player after a dozen minutes or so in the game…