Myth Became ¡Morbo! El Clásico, Book III

The sun sets on the hollow. The hobbits leave off their chores, kicking silver orbs into black sacks, donning their fleece. From the wide tunnel emerges a dark, diminutive Wizard. He stops in mid-field and casts his eyes, flashing like two chips of blackest charcoal, ’round the field. The hobbits draw closer to him.

The Wizard turns towards the gaggle of Young Ones, jostling and elbowing each other. “What are you all doing here?” He quizzes. “This is the Clásico. It is no mere Champions League knock-out round. Go home.”

”Oh please,” cry the Young Ones. “Please, míster, let us go, oh do. We’ll be ever so good, we will.”

The Wizard sighs and waves them quiet. “Well, actually that is what I wanted to speak to you about. As you may know, the Iberia pilots are threatening to strike this month.”

The young hobbits’ eyes grow wide as porridge saucers. The others snort like Clydesdales, pawing the turf with cleated feet.

“And,” the Wizard continues. “It is a puente, this weekend.”

The Elder Ones groan. Curses are muttered. Mothers are condemned as loose women. Holy sacraments are debased.

“That will make traffic impossible,” complains Xavi. “The A-2! We shall not pass.”

“How are we to arrive, then?” cries a Young One. “One does not simply walk into Morbor!”

“We run!” shrieks Dani, jumping up and down, but not one hobbit pays him heed.

“I would offer a skitch on my motorbike,” an assistant Wiz calls from inside the tunnel. “But somebody set it on fire.” Gerard guffaws into his sleeve. Lionel squints upward at a passing cumulus cloud.

“Zaragoza came on the AVE,” Busquets points out.

“Oh, yes! Let’s take the AVE!” chirp the Young Ones. “Choo choo!”

“Look, fellows, it’s not so bad,” frowns the Wizard. “We’ll take a bus. A nice, comfy bus.”

More groans.

“I’ll rent a movie. We liked Matt Damon, didn’t we? Or another gladiator flick? Whaddya say?” The Wizard rests his gaze on each hobbit, who stares at his lacéd feet and blushes at his own insolence. “It’s settled, then. Now, onto serious matters.”

The Wizard clears his throat and begins:

“My dear Cescs and Seydous, Alexises and Andreses, Piqués and Puyols, Messis and Mascheranos, Adrianos and Abidales, Valdeses and Alveses, Xavis and Davides, Thiagos, Maxwells, and Pedro Rodrigueces!”

“Do you know how the wicked Mouron first came into being? An elf himself, taken by dark ambitions that torment his executive board and twist his tongue in post-match pressers. Now purged of all that is més, perfected in Orctasy, he comes for silver with a great army that presses on the counter with speed.” (The Young Ones shudder.)

The Wizard continues. “La Liga standings on the edge of a knife. Prevail and we shall head even into the High Holidays. Stray but a little, and we will fall six points. Yet hope remains while the Club is true.”

(The Elders frown. Puyol rips off his captain’s band and presses his lips against it.)

“He that plays this Saturday will stand tip-toe when the day is named,

or the match is replayed on GolTV’s ‘Clásico Highlights Reel’.

“He will go to the tabernilla and have a copa with his neighbors and say, ‘This is the puente de la Concepción!’

“Then he shall roll up his sleeve and show a tattoo, perhaps in Chinese, perhaps in Arabic, and say, ‘I got this tattoo — this one, right here, between this one and that one, on the Clásico de la Concepción.'”

(Alexis and Cesc flex their ornamented arms.)

“And he’ll tell of the feats he did that day. The tackles, the tarjetas, the tiki, the taka.

“And our names, familiar to all as household words, be they catalá or castellano, in their cañas and chupitos freshly remember’d. This story shall the good man teach his son … or daughter, Andrés, sorry;”

(Andrés smiles generously.)

“From this puente to the end of La Liga!” The Wizard raises his voice to the Heavens.

“We shall remember and be remembered likewise,

We happy hobbits few, we Men of la Masia.

“And he that gets clipped or elbowed or head-butted shall be our own blaugrana brother;

Be he A-Squad forever, or ever so B.

“Let those that chose to play for Mouron believe themselves accursed they were not here among us, from bus to Bernabeu, and hold their manhood in the defensive wall before our ferocious free-kicks.

“For those that fought with us,

This brotherhood, this fellowship,

We are més que un club.”

Tito Villanueva strides onto the pitch and claps the Wizard on the shoulder.

“Well, Boss,” he says brightly. “I’m back.”

End of Book III

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Written by:

SoccerMom obsesses over FCB and this blog instead of grading papers, burning dinner and/or raising her small children. She blames a Spanish husband and easy access to Hispanic-targeted cable sports channels for her football addiction and consequent failure as a professor, housekeeper and mother.


  1. momo
    December 9, 2011

    (Panting) Too…. Many…… Posts….Can’t……. Keep….. Up……

    • mostafa-barca-thuram
      December 9, 2011

      i want more posts . come on .

  2. December 9, 2011

    Shameless plug guys, I wrote a preview of the Clasico. Would love if you guys checked it out:

    • mostafa-barca-thuram
      December 9, 2011

      umm read it . good one . keep it up

    • Momo
      December 9, 2011

      Nicely written…

  3. December 9, 2011

    This was not just a 3 part epic. It was a meta-epic! It’s like Homer rewriting Tolkien with Cruyff as the interpreter. No-not Homer. Like Milton.

    • December 9, 2011

      ^ THIS

  4. jmiddy05
    December 9, 2011

    is it some sort of sick joke that the classic isnt being televised in Australia? just searched foxtel (our satelite tv) and no classic! disgusting…

    • momo
      December 9, 2011

      Crikey!! That’s unfortunate mate!!

  5. General Iroh
    December 9, 2011

    Leaves from the vine , falling so slow , like fragile tiny shells , drifting on the home , little hobbit boys come marching home , Braaave hobbit boys come marching hooomeeee -___-

    • General Iroh
      December 9, 2011

      drifting on the foam *

    • December 9, 2011

      Avatar the last Airbender!

    • hammeronmessi
      December 10, 2011

      so who is the ang for us?

  6. SoccerMom
    December 9, 2011

    Thank you Euler! I’m more of a T. H. White than a T. R. R. Tolkien girl myself. But, hack that I am, I must give credit where it’s due. And when it comes to Pep’s talk, or any pep talk, there is only one — the Avignon speech in Shakespeare’s “Henry V”.

    • General Iroh
      December 9, 2011

      Err , if i want to write here , can i send my articles to you guys ?

    • Miguel
      December 9, 2011

      “We happy hobbits few.” Ummm, yeah, wow. You never cease to amaze us. So pumped for tomorrow!

      So now that you take requests, are you gonna be parodying things like the Twilight Saga or what? Could you do the show Mad Men? I had some poor girl Netflix them with me recently so I could blame her if the question of why I watch that show ever came up. Biggest crush on the blonde-survey-taker-doctor-lady. What is happening to my boy Dick Draper?

      Anyway, can someone e-mail me the link to this week’s Revista de la Liga? Appreciate it.

  7. December 9, 2011

    Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more…
    Thank you SoMa and BFB team!
    These many posts save the nails on my fingers.

    • Momo
      December 9, 2011


  8. Momo
    December 9, 2011

    Do what I’m going to do:

    Step 1.) Figure out which of you’re friends (they don’t need to be footy fans) has the fastest internet connection and a large purty TV.

    Step 2.) Use your charm and good looks ( preferable but not necessary) to seduce them into letting you come to their house for two hours despite the fact its exam time and you have 4 exams in 2 days next week.

    Step 3.) If they don’t let you repeat steps 1 and 2 on the next best qualified person on your long list of “friends”.

    Step 4.) Enjoy

    • Momo
      December 9, 2011

      Woops meant as reply to jmiddy05

    • Calvin
      December 10, 2011

      That’s what I’m doing, although Im not able to rely on my good looks and charm. I had to settle for promising to bring a seven layer dip and beer.

  9. mom4
    December 9, 2011

    SoMa, you have no idea how much I’ve enjoyed these.
    You are a jewel among hobbits cules!

  10. Ryan
    December 9, 2011

    So many posts, this is great!

    Some thoughts:

    – A Madrid supporter in one of the posted podcasts pronounced Cules like “coolies.” 😆
    – In the other podcast, Kari dominated the conversation like Stephen Colbert. I wasn’t expecting that!
    – We’re less than 24 hours away!!
    – A CB pairing of Pepe and Ramos is sure to generate fouls and cards; I hope we can convert one of the many FKs we’ll get within shooting distance.
    – When was the last time we’ve lost to EE with Valdes in goal? The guy is a beast, I’m expecting a big game out of him. 😀

    • December 9, 2011

      dominated the conversation like Stephen Colbert.

      lol, That’s a good thing, right?

    • Ryan
      December 10, 2011

      Yeah, a commanding presence is good – plus it meant less talk of EE and Espanyol. That’s a win in my book!

    • December 10, 2011

      So, the host of the podcast you’re referring to says “coolies” as a joke, just so you’re aware. Nor is he a Madridista. Just evil in a different manner.

    • Ryan
      December 10, 2011

      Ah, I see. It was my first time listening in – thanks for the explanation!

  11. December 10, 2011

    Some quotes Pep presser via barcastuff facebook (tho I think Dani_el has already posted some on a previous thread. Thanks for that!):

    “I haven’t told the players anything new from past years. I haven’t asked for anything special.

    “I’ve only asked them to be bold and to interpret the game …We’ve always gone there with the intention of being ambitious and winning the match. Without being bold, you can’t hope to do well.

    “We must defend well, have good transitions, move the ball around well, find spaces, and be attentive and quick … even with all of this we must be sharp [in front of goal].

    “In past few days the technical staff has been focused on maximizing their understanding of Madrid and their possible tactical variations.

    “”Mourinho is a coach who’s very well prepared. We’ve tried to predict how they will play this time.

    “Madrid have improved on their positioning on the pitch. I think they will come out to pressure high up the pitch, they’ve done well in the past with this strategy, but we will be ready for any situation.

    “Last year we played against each other five times. I haven’t forgotten what happened then or in the Super Cup. We know each other well and we have to play a near perfect game to beat them.”

    “The squad are all doing perfectly well, they are ready and mentally prepared. What I do have decided is how we are going to play.”

    And just for kicks, here’s hoping we see something like this again!

    • Srini
      December 10, 2011

      I was waiting for someone to say that :). Everytime Lowe does this. Predicts against Barcelona and gets it wrong. He has done it so many times that it seems deliberate. Lets hope the trend stays.

  12. Chiu
    December 10, 2011

    I’m a bit cool off now. Just waiting the game start and enjoy it. hopefully Pep make correct tactical plan.

  13. culegirl3
    December 10, 2011

    Bravo! Thanks for taking the time to write such wonderful posts SoccerMom!
    This is much more fun/interesting than reading and writing an essay on Milton’s Paradise Lost 🙂

    I’m stoked about this game!
    I’m so pumped I feel like doing some of this:

  14. December 10, 2011

    I actually think Mourinho might play Sahin, Alonso and Khedira… am I the only one?

    On the other hand Sahin has no experience in a 4-3-3 to my knowledge, and is the defensive trade-off from playing him over Oezil worth it compared to playing a purely defensive third midfielder? He’s considerably more defensive than Oezil yeah, but as a trade-off would that be worth it? Probably not, I’m guessing, especially since he’s only played in the 2 of a 4-2-3-1 in Dortmund etc before? But still, he’s a nominally holding midfielder a la Alonso, with major passing skills compared to the likes of Lass.

    • Srini
      December 10, 2011

      Sahin has not shown enough form and adjustment as yet to be tried out in the Clasico. I doubt if the conservative Mourinho would want to try him out in an important game such as this. It is going to be either Lass or Coentrao. Although the latter played in the Ajax game (full 90 minutes), I suspect it is going to be him.

    • December 10, 2011

      Thanks. So you suspect it IS going to be Coentrao, or not?

    • December 10, 2011

      One of the main reason Sahin was brought in for was to be at the head of the trivote (ala Khedira vs Valencia). Unfortunately, the injury really hampered his adjustment to the team and has only been able to start two games. He is not adjusted to the rhythm of the team and he isn’t fit to play a pressing game vs Barcelona. Fully expect him to play in the away game if all goes well.

    • December 10, 2011

      Thanks, Bassam, nice to hear from someone who properly follows Madrid.

  15. December 10, 2011

    ~11 hours to go.

  16. December 10, 2011

    grr, i can’t concentrate on my exams…
    I’m nervous.. eeh Go Pep Squad!

  17. Diego
    December 10, 2011

    JSC is showing all the Classicos of the last 3 seasons, by the time the match comes I’ll be suffering from HyperClassicosis.

  18. barca96
    December 10, 2011

    Been offline from BFB for a couple of days already. Trying to be calm about it but thought I had to come and post what the Madristas put up in their stadium, a banner that says;

    Mou, your finger shows us the way


  19. lyd
    December 10, 2011

    makes me want to say:

    “Battle of Helm’s Deep is over; the battle for the middle earth is about to begin.”

    But we’ll celebrate tonight anyways.

    And thanks for the treat SoccerMom!

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