Monthly Musings (November 2021)

Greetings from Madrid!

It’s now November, the weather has well and truly turned, the rain is here and the days are getting shorter.

October was a great month for visiting new grounds – I added three to my listand we also were able to get out and about around the Communidad de Madrid. No big trip for the start of November puente, but maybe that’s just as well given the weather.

Where I’ve Been 🗺

Making the most of an extended period of good weather in October, I actually managed to get out and about quite a bit this month.

I started off with a trip to Alcalá de Henares for Atlético Madrid Femenino v Barcelona Femení – el clásico de fútbol femenino – and then the following day, Sarah and I took a day trip to San Lorenzo de El Escorial, the highlight of which was going to see UD San Lorenzo at their ground in the shadow of the Real Monasterio de San Lorenzo de El Escorial and the Sierra de Guadarrama.

We also visited some friends who live in Torrejón de Ardoz and I got my first experience of the Ciudad Deportiva Getafe as Villaverde went down 4-0 to Getafe B.

That’s not even mentioning that we went to the cinema for the first time since before the pandemic hit, to see the much-delayed 25th James Bond film, No Time To Die, which I had mixed feelings about to say the least.

All in all, quite a busy month!

Game of the Month ⚽️

My visit to San Lorenzo de El Escorial at the start of the month was a highlight of the month and will probably remain one of my highlights of the season. The whole experience was brilliant, with the views behind the ground being matched with a fun game on the pitch.

San Lorenzo’s 6-1 win contained a brilliant variety of goals, plenty of needle between the two sides and constant entertainment from the touch line antics of their manager.

Barcelona’s 3-0 win at Atlético Madrid also stood out because of the comprehensive nature of it. Atlético were supposed to be one of the few teams capable of living with Barça (indeed they were the only Spanish team to beat them – or even take points off them at all last season) but in the end the 3-0 scoreline almost flattered them.

Barcelona’s women are quite possibly the most complete team playing football at the moment – in either the men’s or women’s game – and it says a lot that they were able to achieve this level of performance despite leaving the likes of Jenni Hermoso and Lieke Martens on the bench for most of the game.

Most Popular Post 💻

October wasn’t a very busy month on the site in all honesty. After last month’s Monthly Musings, I only published a couple of 2021/22 in Pictures updates until the past week when my San Lorenzo de El Escorial day trip post and the DDFM5 preview came through to boost numbers.

But the monthly winner came from an older post – my 2020/21 season review – which was unexpectedly shared on Twitter by the people behind the excellent Futbology App.

This provided a very welcome bump in the views count, helping me pass my monthly target, something which had looked in doubt a few days earlier,

Book of the Month 📚

I’ve had a busy month in terms of reading. It always happens towards the end of the year when I start thinking about my end-of-year best books list and always end up looking for something new to round the list off.

And I think “Champagne Football” has earned a spot on the list, even if it’s not strictly about football – rather the off-field machinations and politicking of former FAI Chief Executive John Delaney.

Opening with an account of Delaney’s star-studded, James Bond-themed 50th birthday party, the book goes back in time to explore his rise to the position of the most powerful man in the FAI, the constant stream of controversies and ultimately the scandal that brought him down.

I absolutely flew through this, barely believing some of the things he was able to get away with before everything finally caught up with him in 2019. It’s definitely an eye-opening look into the world of football administration.

Día del Fútbol Modesto 5: The Reawakening

The social highlight of the month undoubtedly came on its last day as Día del Fútbol Modesto returned for the first time since before the pandemic.

There was a great turnout for the morning game at Villaverde to see the home side against Tercera leaders Fuenlabrada Promesas. Botti ultimately came up short in a controversial game but DDFM isn’t really about the football – it’s about the connections made. I really enjoyed seeing some familiar faces for the first time this season and some for the first time in even longer!

Sarah even came along for the experience and despite the on and off again rain, she did have a good time, especially when she tried her first Botti bocata – a lovely lomo y queso!

What’s Up Next?

1st November is a public holiday here in Spain, so I’m enjoying a well-earned day off work and looking forward to the prospect of going to see Rayo Vallecano play at home for the first time in over two years later on this afternoon. I’m also thinking of going to see them at the Bernabéu next Saturday, which would mark my first visit there in even longer!

Living in Madrid, we’re fortunate enough to get both the 1st and 9th of November as days off, but as the second is a Tuesday, the only effect of this will be to make it feel like next week has two Mondays. I have picked out a few games for November already – and I’ll start on my end of year review posts with my Books of the Year (or more accurately, the best books I’ve read this year) arriving before the end of the month.

Until next time,

All the best,

Andrew

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