This Saturday, one of them will raise a Champions League trophy and probably his middle finger, while the whole madridismo will look covered in shame and tears. It is supposed to be our €250 million team celebrating a Champions League win on home soil.
Arjen Robben and Wesley Sneijder, both victims of last summer’s galactication, are coming back to Santiago Bernabeu, in order to play against each other and in front of people who kicked them out last August.
But coming to think of it, was it really a bad move selling them? No. In fact, leaving Madrid was the best thing that could happen to them.They both had full support from new coach Pellegrini, who wanted them to stay. But the coach had never anything to say in Real Madrid, and they really needed money for Xabi Alonso so the Dutch duo was put on a transfer list.
Arjen Robben, known for his tendency to suffer injuries and as a tremendous winger when not injured, was sold to Bayern Munich for €25 million. He became a natural leader of his team, scoring crucial goals in the earlier stages of the Champions League and broke his image of a player who disappears when it comes to the big games. Thanks to him, the inevitable loss of Ribery in the final is easy to deal with.
Wesley Sneijder went to Inter for €15 million (lame, considering that we bought him for €27 million) where Jose Mourinho found his on-pitch alter ego in him. Wesley became the Nerrazurri's most important player in the midfield, taking the ball from all sides and distributing it to his wingers and front-men. Sneijder is not spectacular but always effective, thanks to a powerful shot and instinct for goals.
Would it be possible for Robben and Sneijder to be a star leaders if they stayed in Madrid? No. Would Robben and Sneijder have willingly accepted a role among the substitutes in Madrid? No, they’re Dutch.
Everyone knows how difficult it is to keep players like them happy without making them first-choice. And when they’re not happy, they’re not afraid to express it.
So they went to another teams ,they immediately became key figures, their manager's first choice, and fans' favorites.
But it is still painful for madridistas, considering circumstances of their exits. Florentino Perez forced them to leave in order to make place for big names. Not for the first time, it happened before, when player was kicked out due to “not fitting in teams philosophy” (meaning disappointing jersey sales) and then moved to another team and lived happily ever after (Cambiasso, Makelele, Eto’o).
So now we’re going to watch our two summer kick-outs fight for the European Cup, while the whole world will repeat the same old story that “money can’t buy trophies.” It will be perfectly understandable when the winner, Wesley or Arjen, will flash his gold medal and say something nasty. Like s…I’m not going to write it, you know what I mean.
But better one angry ex-Real Dutchman winning Champions League on Santiago Bernabeu, than the whole Barcelona.