Who needs Ronaldo? Real Madrid’s new No7 Mariano Díaz takes centre stage

Real Madrid sold Mariano Díaz to Lyon in 2017 but now he is back and his sumptuous goal against Roma suggests he will not be intimidated by the pressure of wearing the famous shirt

“It’s just a number,” Mariano Díaz said, but it isn’t. Over on the touchline, the fourth official held up the board. Coming off, No.11; coming on, No.7. Mariano stood and waited for Gareth Bale, wearing the shirt Cristiano Ronaldo wore for eight of the nine years he spent at Real Madrid until his departure this summer, that Raúl González Blanco wore for the 16 years before that and Emilio Butragueño wore for the 12 years before that. Thirty-six years, 14 league titles, seven European Cups and 911 goals later, it was his. No pressure, kid. As he waited, Julen Lopetegui approached. “I told him to stick it in the top corner,” the manager joked. “And he did what I said.”

Related: Cristiano Ronaldo sent off but 10-man Juventus go on to beat Valencia

Continue reading…

via Football | The Guardian

Leave a Reply