The Truth Behind Real Madrid

Whether you are new to the sport of football, or you have been a fan for years, odds are you have heard some mention of the team Real Madrid. Now known as one of the most successful professional football clubs they, like other teams of its time, started from humble beginnings.

Things were rough when they started out in the first decade of the 20th century. While much effort went into finding a permanent plot of land for the team to play on, success was made with the rental of a plot of land on Bullring Avenue. Not long after that, Real Madrid was formed. Once considered part of Espanol de Madrid, Real Madrid was officially founded back in 1902, with club regulations being approved not long after the team’s creation date.

While the team had some success, its first official title was not achieved until 1905 with the first international event taking place later that same year. Real Madrid began to make their name known with the accomplishment of winning the Cup of Spain for three consecutive years, from 1905 to 1907 to be exact. When 1909 rolled around, it proved to be quite a successful year for Real Madrid. After a meeting with delegates from other Spanish football clubs, the Spanish FA was created with Real Madrid’s president being named as the secretary of the organization.

As time passed and the team’s popularity grew, Madrid obtained their first league title in the 1931 to 32 season. This proved to be the start of the team’s power with this title being the start of the 29 League titles that they would accomplish over the years. Due to the start of the war in 1936 Real Madrid’s popularity started to decrease. Attempts were made by Pablo Hernandez to keep the team in the public eye, but multiple attempts failed miserably. While all hope appeared to be lost, 1939 brought the first full house at Chamartin Stadium for Real Madrid. While it was perceived that interest in football decreased with the war, support held and grew as the war rolled on with its popularity becoming well known when the war was over.

1943 brought their first historical win. In a semi-final game against the Catalans, Madrid defeated them with a score of 11-1. As the years passed, the team proved itself to be a power to be reckoned with. The 1950’s brought the team’s third league title after 23 years.

When it comes to league titles, Real Madrid is one of the only teams in the league to win five consecutive times in the 76 year history of the competition. They accomplished this feat in the 1960-61, 1964-65, 1985-86 and 1989-90 seasons. No other team in the history of the competition has been able to meet or even break the record that has been created by the successful Real Madrid team.

The present and the future show great promise for the team. With the team having just celebrated their 106 birthday in March of 2008, the team continues to achieve success. With a mixed history, their past has proven them to be a force to be reckoned with and they may just be one of the most powerful teams for years to come.

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FIFA World Cup 2010 – Who is More Likely to Succeed, Rooney or Messi?

Lionel Messi, the star striker for Barcelona and Argentina, will celebrate his 23rd birthday, on June 24, while the FIFA World Cup 2010 is on. Wayne Rooney, his counterpart at Manchester United and England, will turn 25, in October.

Mention either of these players, and chances are, you will also mention the other, because these are arguably the two best players in the world. Both are geniuses on the football field who can transform the fortunes of their respective teams, if they are fully fit and playing to potential.

Here is the question: who is more likely to set the World Cup 2010 ablaze with his performance, Rooney or Messi?

They have had amazing similarities in their careers. Both players were signed by clubs at age 11, Messi by Barcelona, ​​Rooney by Everton. Rooney held the record for the youngest player to represent a team in the EPL; Messi was the team's youngest ever player, when he debuted in the Spanish League (La Liga). Messi was the youngest to score a goal in La Liga; Rooney held the record for being the youngest ever scorer in the EPL. Both players achieved the feat before they turned 17. Rooney who got a debt hat-trick for Man U also went to become the youngest international for England, in 2003.

The coincidences do not end there. Both players completed 100 goals for their respective club teams, in January 2010. Both players chose the 2010 season to score 4 goals in a single match. Messi did it against Arsenal in the Champions League, while Rooney's four goals came in a match against Hull.

There are some differences, too: To start with, Messi is slightly built and 5'7 "tall; Rooney is 3 inches taller, and built like a bull.

Championships Won:

Messi has been a part of championship winning Barcelona on 12 occasions, including the Champions League twice, and the FIFA Club World Cup, once. He has also helped Argentina win two titles, the FIFA U-20 World Cup, and an Olympic Gold at Beijing.

Rooney has won eight titles, all for Manchester United, including the Champions League, and the FIFA Club World Cup, once each. Both players have a host of individual awards. Messi would have particularly relished winning the World Soccer Player of The Year award, 2009.

Fittingly, both players are among the richest in their respective leagues. Rooney has several commercial endorsements, apart from a lucrative book deal with Harper and Collins.

Personal Endorsements:

Both players have gushing endorsements from players and managers. Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini, England player, Steven Gerrard, Chelsea boss, Ankellotti, Mark Lorenson, Argentina player, Tevez, Rooney's Man U teammate, Wes Brown, David Beckham, and ex-England strikers, Shearer and Lineker, are all unanimous in their view that Rooney is the best player in the world.

Brazilian midfielder Kaka, his Argentina teammates, Deco and Riquelme, Barcelona boss Laporta, Barcelona manager Josep Guardiola, Arsenal FC Forward and Denmark international Nicklas Bendtner, Real Madrid striker Arjen Robben, and Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger are amon Messi's abiding fans. In fact, La Porta claims that Messi is the greatest player of all time. Maradona has anointed Messi as his successor, while Pele who predicted that Messi would get the FIFA best player award in 2009, says Messi should first establish as the best ever Argentina player, and also score 1,000 goals before he can replace the Brazilian legend as the best ever.

Strengths:

Rooney is fast and sturdy built and uses its physical strength to get past defenders. He is comfortable playing through the middle, and can operate on his own, up front. He is naturally gifted, and extremely opportunistic, and inventive. He revels in unleashing powerful volleys from the top of the box. Rooney owes his physical strength to four years spent in amateur boxing. Although a striker, he excels from deep, and capitalizes on his close control and strength while running at defenders even as he uses vision to create openings for others.

Messi is arguably the best dribbler in the world, and can dance his way past defences. He has, in a club game replicated Maradona's goal against England in the `1986 quarter final, dribbling past 6 players and running the same distance as the Argentina legend did on that occasion. Messi displays quintessential South American flair, and his goals come from close range, inside the box, and depend not so much on power, as on guile and precision.

Weaknesses:

Rooney has been injury liberty. He has also shown a penchant for being hot headed. Messi has also had injury issues. But there are no perceptible weaknesses in his game, but nitpickers could claim that he has not been as successful for Barcelona, ​​in away games, as he has been in home games. Also, Messi is yet to play to potential for Argentina – the team had a mediocre showing in the qualifiers. Could it be that he does not have as great a supporting cast in the national team, as in Barcelona, ​​which has the likes of Xavi, Pedro and Pichichi combining well with Messi?

In contrast, Rooney has been prolific for England, with 25 strikes in just over twice as many matches. There are critics who claim that Rooney is over-rated and is likely to meet his comeuppance whenever he meets a strong South American team. The best way to dispel such doubts is for Rooney to perform on the field. To his credit, Rooney scored a goal in a 3-2 win in a friendly, against Argentina, in 2005.

Recent form:

Both players have been in tremendous form in 2010. Rooney has had 34 goals from 44 appearances for Man U, and Messi 47 goals in 53 appearances.

Prospects in World Cup 2010:

Although Messi's reliably unimpressive record for Argentina is an argument used against him, he had a goal against Croatia in World Cup 2006. In contrast, Rooney had a lacklustre goal-less outing, in Germany, in 2006, playing in the shadow of injury until his ignominious red-card exit in the quarter-final. But all that will be history, when the tournament kicks off in South Africa, come June 11.

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5 Great Places to Take a Water Sports Holiday

Water sports enthusiasts who enjoy activities like sailing, yachting, rafting, canoeing and jet skiing and are looking to take a holiday themed on such activities will find plenty of choices in terms of destinations. This guide lists five of the best choices for water sport holidays.

1. Tahiti – Located in French Polynesia, Tahiti offers a long list of water based activities and water related activities that adventure enthusiasts are sure to enjoy. Tahiti has many beautiful beaches made up of soft white sands and turquoise waters. Scuba diving, fishing, windsurfing, water skiing, kayaking, snorkeling, boating tours, catamaran cruises, walking under the sea, jet skiing, para sailing and canoeing are just some of the activities available that visitors to Tahiti can enjoy.

2. Barcelona – This city is situated along the Catalan coast, and has seven beaches and 4.5 kilometres of coastline. The proximity to the beach has encouraged the development of water based events and activities here and the city boasts many diving schools, water sport centres and boat chartering agencies. In Barcelona, people can enjoy a variety of water sports, ranging from sailing to jet skiing.

3. Florida – This state is known for its beaches and it is no surprise that people come here from all around America and the world, to participate in water sport activities. With the famous Florida Keys, the Miami Beach, West Palms, Fort Myers Beach and many other stretches of beach area that play host to a number of water sport activities, Florida is the ideal destination for people who like water sports.

4. Cuba – Tourists and people looking for qualified diving training can enjoy a trip to Cuba, where tourists can find a number of excellent locations for a wide choice of water sports and water related activities like scuba diving, snorkeling, windsurfing, yachting, surfing, sailing, water skiing and jet skiing. Locations such as Varadero have diving schools and some of the best teachers from around the world come to teach in the warm Caribbean waters.

5. Thailand – The south of Thailand boasts some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, along with some of the best dive locations. The Phuket Island, Krabi and the neighbouring islands offer many facilities for tourists to indulge in a number of activities. The most common activities in this area are rafting, canoeing, diving and snorkelling.

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