31 May 2022: Covid in Sweden; Real Madrid’s real victory; Brothels near me; Boar-ing stats; & Other stuff.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Dawn%2BBox%2BDay%2B2015.JPG
Night’s candles are burnt out, and jocund day stands tiptoe on the misty mountain tops

Spanish life is not always likeable but it is compellingly loveable
Christopher Howse: ‘A Pilgrim in Spain’


An interesting podcast on Sweden’s approach.

Cosas de España or Galiza 

Sad to see that the far-right Vox party is predicted to increase its share of the total seats from 10 to 20% in the imminent Andalucian elections.

Below is a nice commentary on Real Madrid’s victory over Liverpool on Saturday night. It was issued by a Madrid press agency in Spanish and it’s very accurate and fair. And justification for me saying that the real result wasn’t Real Madrid 1: Liverpool 0, but Courtois 0: Liverpool -25. No wonder the UK press gave him 10/10. The cherry on an (undeserved?) cake,

When I came to Galicia 20 years ago, there were several brothels on the ‘old road’ – the N550 – to Vigo. Driving it yesterday, I noted the more recent total of three has now been reduced to just one. And the suggestive neon figure of a woman above the Hotel Eden has been blacked out. Likewise in my barrio of Poio, 3 have become 1. And it’s a similar story between Pontevedra and Santiago de Compostela. I have no idea what it signifies. Almost certainly not a crackdown of any sort. Maybe a switch to (cheaper to run?) pisos de relax in the 3 cities.

Wild boars were involved in 3,340  road accidents in Galicia last year, against:-

Deer 1,152

Foxes 129

Badgers 81

Cows 23 


wolves 16

An increasing problem. 10 accidents a day at the moment

At a table of 4 beside me on a terraza last night, the 2 women got up to stand apart and smoke, while the men didn’t. Very representative of modern Spain. Where women have for some time regarded smoking as sophisticated. And as an aide to staying slim. Despite the fact that, combined with the sun, it makes your face look like a walnut by the time you’re 60. But since when did the young think about old age?

At last some good news for drivers in Pontevedra city – the risk of your car being broken into here is 78% below the national urban average. Possibly because drug addicts plague us with begging, if they’re not acting as unofficial ‘guides’ into free parking spaces.

Quote of the Day

Criminalising catcalling won’t stop men hitting their wives


A couple of possibly esoteric words:-

Burundunga: A piece of junk; Scopolamine – an undetectable drug, it says in the VdG today.

Rebuscado: Far-fetched; elaborate

Finally . . .

Sadly, something needed in Spain:-

For passing readers: If you’ve landed here looking for info on Galicia or Pontevedra, try here. If you’re passing through Pontevedra on the Camino, you’ll find a guide to the city there.


A statistically inexplicable triumph

Real Madrid won their 14th European Cup with a 1-0 victory over Liverpool at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis in a success that is difficult to explain statistically, showing an overwhelming dominance by Liverpool, who were denied by Thibaut Courtois, the goalkeeper of the Champions League, and fell to Madrid’s only shot on target.

There is not one statistic from the final, other than defensive, that shows Real Madrid’s superiority over Liverpool. Hence the greatness of a sport like football, which rewarded the resilience of Carlo Ancelotti’s side and their tactical gamble to stop a team that had only gone one game without scoring in their last 25.

Klopp’s 23 shots from Klopp’s players came up against a giant. Courtois saved nine on target, especially brilliant in six decisive saves that clinched the final. Four to Mohammed Salah who, far from shaking off the thorn from Kiev, deepened his open wound with Real Madrid. Ancelotti’s side had three shots, only one on target, Vinícius Junior’s shot on target and they even wasted two final counter-attacks to win by a greater advantage on the scoreboard.

Liverpool’s verticality and the speed of their attacks in transition is evidenced by the fact that despite making 73 attempts to get past the Madrid defence, to Real Madrid’s 24, possession ended level at 50-50. Luka Modric’s growth in the match was key, as was the improvement of Casemiro, who lost numerous balls in the first half and came on in the second.

But not even in the defensive work of recovering balls from a Real Madrid side that retreated into their own half when they scored and Ancelotti gave up the plan he had designed, with the introduction of Rodrygo and the switch to 4-3-3, did they outplay their opponents. 47 balls recovered by both teams, 536 passes completed out of 611 for the Reds (88% success rate) to 446 for Madrid out of 525 (85%).

Ancelotti’s low block positioning meant that Liverpool, with a heavier match load in their starting line-up in the last month of their season, covered more kilometres (114.3 to Real Madrid’s 111).

The UEFA data do not provide a favourable record for the Spanish team, who, by opting for the counter-attack, incurred more offside (4 to 1), dribbled less (14 to 17) and stepped less in key areas of the pitch (11 times to 20 for their opponents). They were forced to play long and left only four passes in the opposition box to the Reds’ 23.

Only in defence was the work of 90 minutes of maximum intensity reflected by players united in their effort. The Madrid players blocked eight shots from their opponents, won 18 duels to Liverpool’s 14, made more successful tackles (15 to nine), and cleared as best they could the continuous attacks they received, up to 17.

The final will go down in history as the greatest display by a goalkeeper in a major tournament. Courtois, with his nine saves, raised the average that already crowned him as the most decisive goalkeeper in the Champions League. He made 61 saves in the entire competition, an average of 4.7 per game, and achieved his fifth clean sheet in the thirteen matches of the tournament .

One comment

Comments are closed.