Real Madrid has won the championship for the 11th time! Whether you go for Real Madrid or not, or even if you are not a soccer fan, this is big news if you live in Madrid! Real Madrid vs Atlético de Madrid in a championship match, home team vs home team!
One thing you need to know is that soccer in Spain is more than just a sport. Not only is it politically charged, but the people get into it like no other! For nearly two hours the entire city was in a sort of “shock and awe” phase waiting to see who the victor would be; the reason being was that both teams are from the same city. The entire city was either glued to their TV at home or at a bar or restaurant watching the game intensely waiting to see which team would prove to be the superior one.
Here in Madrid the tradition is that whenever Real Madrid wins, their fans go celebrate at the Cibeles Fountain; and if Atlético Madrid wins their fans celebrate at the Fountain of Neptune about just one street over. Since no one knew who was going to win there were 2 stages set up, one at each fountain.
Once there was a clear victory with Real Madrid winning the people headed towards the Cibeles fountain to celebrate the win. When I say celebrate, I mean CELEBRATE!!! Yes that needed three exclamation points!
Just imagine a crowd of 30,000 Madridistas (the clubs’ fans) gathered around the Plaza de Cibeles all shouting “Hala Madrid!” and singing the Madrid Anthem. They shout Hala Madrid which translates to “Go Madrid” or “Forward Madrid”; it is also the name of the official club anthem. The crowd was so loud that you could hear it all the way underground in the subway system.
This was definitely one for the books as they say. I stayed out there until 5 in the morning the next day, along with tens of thousands of fans as we waited for the champions to arrive from Milan so we could celebrate with them in person. Sadly, they did not arrive until almost 8 a.m., and by the time I was long gone and asleep in my bed.
All in all I have to say that this was a legen… wait for it…. dary experience! #HalaMadrid