What a true fan really means

 

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Original                                                                     English

Ce sont les meilleures équipes                                 These are the best teams

Sie sind die allerbesten Mannschaften                     They are the very best teams

The main event                                                         The main event

Die Meister                                                                The Masters

Die Besten                                                                 The best

Les Grandes Équipes                                                The great teams

The Champions                                                         The champions

Une grande réunion                                                   A large gathering

Eine große sportliche Veranstaltung                          A great sporting event

The main event                                                          The main event

Ils sont les meilleurs                                                   They are the best

Sie sind die Besten                                                     They are the best

These are the champions                                           These are the champions

Die Meister                                                                  The Masters

Die Besten                                                                  The best

Les Grandes Équipes                                                 The great teams

The Champions                                                          The Champions

These are the lyrics of the UEFA Champions League theme. The original lyrics are written in 3 languages: German, French, and English. Every year, the top teams of all European leagues compete to qualify to this championship, and only 16 teams reach the finals. For football (soccer) clubs this is the most competitive and prestigious competition in the world. Reaching this championship is every player’s dream after the World Cup.

I started watching football since I was very young. My uncle used to be and still a huge fan of the Spanish team Real Madrid, where real means “royal” in English. It was an honor given by the King of Spain. I read about the club history and watched their games, and I immediately fell in love with that team. It is well known globally for having the best legendary players in the world, like Zidan, Ronaldo, Di Stefano, Beckham, Raul, Luis Figo, Cristiano Ronaldo, and many more. It’s also known for having one of the largest budgets in the world for a football club.

Many people think that Real Madrid fans (those who are not Spanish) are less knowledgeable about football than the others. Since the club always had the iconic and best players in the world, it was a choice for many fans who wanted to start watching football. Although this might be true for a small percentage of the fans, but it’s not the case at all for the majority of the fan base.

Real Madrid has won the UEFA Champions League title for 10 times now. Real Madrid has won the very first European Cup championship in 1956, which later in 1992 became the UEFA Champions League tournament. They won it 5 years in a row in the beginning of this championship. Since then, no other team has ever took the record from Real Madrid of winningthe most Champions League trophies.

The last time Real Madrid won the UEFA Champions league was in 2002. Del Bosque was the coach at that time, and he won the Champions League title twice in 2000 and 2002 with Real Madrid. These were golden years for Real Madrid in the 21 century. But since then, after Del Bosque left the club, the team was broken apart. They stopped winning Spanish titles, there performance was much degraded that they didn’t reach the final or even the semifinal or the quarterfinal sometimes for 12 years. They have bought the best players in the world for the team but there was no equivalent outcome in the performance, and there was no chemistry between the players. For 12 years all Real Madrid fans have watched the team lose many times in a very bad way that is not logical at all for a team who has players in such caliber.

Nevertheless, many fans kept supporting the club with all the loses. It was hard to support a club when they’re barley competing for any championship. But that is the whole point of being a true fan. You don’t support a team just to see them win, you support a team and stick with it in the good and glorious times, and the bad times as well.

In the last 3 years, Real Madrid’s performance has improved a lot. They started becoming more competitive and the national titles started coming back. Since Jose Morinho started coaching\ the team, the media and the fans had very high hopes because Morinho is one hell of a good coach. But even Morinho couldn’t bring back the Champions League trophy back to Santiago Bernabeu Stadium in Madrid. He couldn’t even reach the final game.

This year, Real Madrid played with a performance that was magical. They beat all the other competitive teams with big scores, they beat Bayern Munich 4-0 in Germany after losing to them 4-1 last year. They reached the final game and played against Atletico Madrid for the title. The fans couldn’t believe their eyes, seeing the team playing for the finals after 12 years. Atletico Madrid scored first due to a big mistake by Casilas, the goal keeper. The team was the best during the whole game, and during the second half, the game was literally taking place in Atletico Madrid’s half only, Real was attacking unstoppably. The players never lost hope and kept the pressure for the whole game. They had a lot of good shots and attempts on the goal, but Atletico Madrid was playing in a very good defensive way. At the final minute of the extra time, Modrich plays a corner directly to Sergio Ramos who perfectly headed the ball inside the net making the score 1-1. That was, one of the most emotional moments I’ve ever had watching a football game, the game was totally changed after this goal and they went to extra time. Every fan around the world went totally crazy. The game ended eventually 4-1 to Real Madrid, and became the champions of Europe.

I have waited for this moment for 12 years. 12 years supporting a team waiting for them to win the title and waiting to watch them as a truly powerful team. This moment is here finally. Watching Casilas raising the trophy and the players celebrating was truly sensational. If they won the title 2 years ago, I wouldn’t have felt the same. I’ve been charging my emotions for 12 years so finally I can truly enjoy watching the team winning this glorious champions.

Congratulations to Real Madrid! To the Champions! Watching you celebrating with the theme song of UEFA Champions League playing in the background was priceless!

Hala Madrid!

 

 

Raed Tawil

BSc in Electrical Engineering

Illinois Institute of Technology

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