Wednesday, October 20

Jorge Vadano: Benzema, neither cat nor criminal | sports

The confusion. I read that “a peasant took care of a puma that he mistook for a cat.” Like me football Everything I see, I said to myself “something similar happened to Benzema.” The cougar is stunted because they fed him milk, the same as Karin did when they confused his style with laziness, his pauses with laziness, his assists with a lack of ambition. Without confidence, a cougar descends to a cat. Time passed and no one recognized his mistake; rather, there is a tendency to believe that the one who changed was Benzema, as if his class did not come from birth. Then came another confusion of a worse tone, when the French coach measured him as a citizen rather than as a footballer, feeling himself judge before coach. The decision declared Karin a delinquent in a case yet to be tried. This week Deschamps rectified and confirmed it for the Eurocup. Neither cat nor delinquent, cougar and great footballer thanks to his talent.


From less to more. Militão came to Madrid with a good record, but a few games were enough for us to take away his confidence. Several signs of these times coincided. The prestige of the impact, because under his empire the latter is worth more than all the former. Social networks, which enshrine the opinion of many over that of the experts. And his condition of defense, much less seductive than that of the forwards. The truth is that we underestimate Militão. Until he played a dozen games in a row and we discovered a prodigious race and jump to win duels on the ground and in the air, to overtake the rivals on the shoulder and anticipate them, to go out with the ball with an imperial ease. He avoided and scored goals, attenuated Ramos’s nostalgia and reminded us that he is 22 years old and a decade old to occupy one of the most delicate positions in a team that attacks by default.

Making history. Many things are said about Simeone because the coaches, of any sign, have become the very center of the bitter football target. As if the responsibility of the players had ceased to exist. But there is a definitive conquest for which Simeone is the main responsible: it changed the history of Atlético. He put his stamp on it and gave it a successful continuity. In the leaderboard, in the collective imagination and in the deepest psychology. How is a beans who win, the Athletics are no longer proud to lose. We come from different clubs and we come from opposite schools, he bilardista and me menottista, but I’m far from demonizing it. I can recognize those who think differently, but do things well, and Simeone is an indisputable case of leadership. You are now one step away from achieving new success. Whether I make it or not, I take off my hat.

The squeeze. You’ve been wanting to go to the bathroom for a long time and can’t wait to get home to blow off some steam, but the journey is endless. Finally he gets on the elevator, the goal is close and it is precisely that anxiety that ends up turning his stomach. Have you gotten used to the idea? Well, in that elevator, Atlético and Madrid travel this afternoon in the tightest end of a championship in a long time. The coaches have different profiles: Simeone is expressive, demanding, tactical and, like all pragmatists, he even has the face of a winner; Zidane, maker of a kind of ecological balance, is calm, humanist and, although he is still accompanied by a paranoid distrust, he wins like no one else. The two are followed by the players as one man. But now the players are in that elevator and, going back to the simile, I know people who, in that trance, have done it to them.

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