Real Madrid changed my life…
Whenever I say Real Madrid changed my life, people think I’m joking or exaggerating. But, I am 100% serious.
Soccer has always been a huge part of my life. My brother has been a fan of Manchester United forever and I grew up in a house where Saturday and Sunday mornings were dedicated to the Premier League. Admittedly, I did not enjoy watching the matches with my brother and my mom as much as them when I was young and preferred to play the sport myself… until Real Madrid
World Cup 2010
When the World Cup rolled around in 2010 in South Africa, I was ecstatic. I was in Germany with my entire family and I couldn’t control my excitement before each match. I was 12 years old at the time and I had not been a fan of club soccer at that point, but the World Cup was like a second Christmas for me.
When the tournament ended, I was devastated that my days were not going to revolve around soccer anymore. But, as soon I got back to the US after my trip to Germany, I began to watch club soccer because I had discovered some new inspirations. I began to watch matches in the Bundesliga and I finally understood why my brother was so obsessed with club soccer.
Love at first sight
In early January of 2011, I had no school or soccer practice and I could not handle how bored I was. The Bundesliga was on holiday until mid-January and I missed the exciting soccer matches on the weekends. As I was looking through the channel guide on the TV with my mom looking for something interesting, we found that La Liga, the Spanish soccer league, had already resumed their season after the holidays. That was the first time I watched an entire Real Madrid match and fell in love with the team.
Of course, I already knew that Real Madrid was an all-star team. Cristiano Ronaldo, the star player at the time, is the most famous soccer player so it was impossible to not know or hear about them. But, watching them for myself for a whole match with my full attention was another story.
The style of play, the fan atmosphere, the players’ aura: it was all mesmerizing. Even through the TV, I could feel the passion that the Madridistas (Real Madrid fans) had for the game and the team. The stands were covered in white t-shirts (Real Madrid is known as “los blancos”, or the whites, for their signature white jerseys) and the players appeared like they were playing for their lives.
After watching a few Real Madrid matches, I was obsessed. I researched the team, I watched every single game, I followed all of the accounts on social media, and shortly after, I was a Real Madrid expert.
There’s something about Real Madrid that I just love; I simply have an indescribable passion for the team.
How did a soccer team change my life?
- First off, Real Madrid allowed me to obtain a lifelong passion. Soccer has always been my favorite activity, and I absolutely loved every second that I was playing on the field from when I was 6 years old. But, you can only play on a soccer team for so long.After senior year of high school, I was done with playing the sport competitively. But, to this day, Real Madrid is my way of continuing my passion forever. Maybe I can’t play on an intense soccer team anymore, but I will always have a way to channel my love for soccer through Real Madrid.
- Real Madrid let me discover my passion for Spanish culture. In 2016, I chose to intern in Madrid because of my love of the city that stemmed from Real Madrid; while slowly becoming a bigger and bigger fan, I also learned a lot about the culture in Madrid. When I finally got the opportunity to go to the city of my dreams after years of excited anticipation, I could not have been happier with the experience. It did help that the office for my internship was RIGHT ACROSS THE STREET from Estadio Santiago Bernabéu, Real Madrid’s home stadium!!!!!!!!From this experience in Madrid, I expanded on my knowledge of the Spanish language and culture and managed to fall even more in love with the culture in Madrid and all of Spain (if that’s even possible).
- Lastly, Real Madrid gives me pure joy. Maybe this is something only sports fans will understand, but Real Madrid genuinely gives me the most joy in my life.Throughout the years, I have been through tough times just like everybody else. One thing that never failed to bring a smile to my face was Real Madrid. Even on the worst of days, seeing Sergio Ramos make an amazing tackle or Cristiano Ronaldo score an incredible goal made me truly happy. Something about supporting a team every single gives me an indescribable joy.
Real Madrid is my #1 passion.
To give an example of how much Real Madrid means to me, when Real Madrid won the Champions League tournament in 2016 when I was actually in Madrid was the best day of my life. I cried, I laughed, and I celebrated amongst the other Madridistas in Madrid. It was just. so. amazing.
Whether I am watching a match, making new friends over our mutual love for the team, or looking up statistics before a big match, I am always thankful that I found genuine happiness in Real Madrid. Simply put, supporting Real Madrid is my greatest passion in life, and it always will be.