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Bernabeu Bites: Jose Mourinho Talks Transfers, Rafa Benitez And How To Beat FC Barcelona


Welcome to Bernabeu Bites where every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday we take you around the world of Real Madrid, la Liga and European football all in tasty bite-size form. So grab your favorite beverage, sit back and enjoy.

Ah, Derby day! Unfortunately, I wont be around to watch as los blancos most likely dismantle Getafe. I will be attending an MLS match, the Seattle Sounders v.s. a team that shares our name, Real Salt Lake. I'm still wondering who exactly the king of Utah is, and this may forever remain a mystery.

Anyways, on with Bernabeu Bites.

Jose Mourinho doesn't believe that at this point Real Madrid are missing any parts. And while during the summer there were only five signings, he believes that no more were necessary--thus the lack of activity at the transfer deadline. Some believe that Mou should have added another striker, however.

"We did a good job last season, so radical changes weren't necessary," Mourinho told Lusa. "It may seem contradictory that Real Madrid spent so little when they can afford so much. Other clubs spend more than they should."

During the presser he also explained the reason for signing Fabio Coentrao, which was less about need and more along the lines of giving the Portuguese manager options.

"We didn't sign Coentrao out of need of a left-back," he said. "We happen to have a very good one, possibly the best there is. Coentrao is here because of the many options he gives us always at a high level."

Over at Forza Futbol, they break down the Summer transfer window in relation to money sold and money spent. So it should come as no surprise that teams like Real Madrid, FC Barcelona and Malaga spent the most. Now recently, I've read some things that imply that Real Madrid's youth system isn't that great because they sell off their best talent to other clubs, but guess who sold off the most youth talent?

Barçelona has profited 21M in the sale of youth players this year. A record amount for the club. Nearly 87% of total sales.

-Forza Futobol

Emphasis is mine.

Arsenal recently got their first victory of the season--too bad it doesn't count for points in the Premier League table. It seems they've won a court battle. They have forced a Seville woman to rename her hat store, which had been up until the court case, named "Arsenale"--the Gunner's claimed, however, that it was copyright infringement and that people might confuse her store with the Premier League side. 

Jose Luis Perez, the sporting director of Atlético Madrid hopes that his team can help break up the strangle hold that FC Barcelona and Real Madrid have on la Liga. The thing is, no team outside the Bernabeu nor the Nou Camp have won the Liga title in about a decade. The last to do it was Valencia back in 2004.

Perez hopes that Atletico Madrid can make a run at the top dogs after finishing mid-table last season.

"There are many good squads behind Madrid and Barcelona," he told AS. "At some point that bipolarity will have to be broken up and I hope Atletico can get into that fight."

The Neymar saga rolls on, as Marca published a story that suggests that because of Real Madrid's pursuit of the Brazilian striker, they could face FIFA sanctions. Of course, this is coming from Marca, so you know what that means right? That means that a source close to Neymar reported to ESPN Soccer (I love all the "sources" here) that it's a load of crap. They even quoted said-"source".

"This [talk of FIFA sanctions] is nonsense. Who will complain? Not Santos. They have dealings with the two clubs, Real Madrid and Barcelona, who have the right to sign the player as they have agreed to pay the buyout clause. I imagine if he went to Real, then Barcelona could complain, but that is hardly likely. In any case, Neymar is still making up his mind, there is no decision yet, and nobody has signed a contract."

If you think that's the only piece of Neymar "news" I have for this edition, you, my friend, would be completely wrong. I'm not sure who I'm getting tired of the most, the kid himself, his agent or his father. Right now I'd say his father is a front runner, as he's demanding that Santos make some sort of decision because of all this interest from la Liga's top teams. And of course, I have a quote.

"Neymar is happy at Santos and if he wanted to leave one day, he has to have the club's blessing. That is why we are asking Santos to define where and in what fashion we will go, to put an end to more speculation," the patriarch revealed in an interview given to Punto Pelota in Spain. "We need certain guarantees and an objective answer to define his future."

The sad thing is that this isn't going to go away anytime soon, though something is bound to happen either after the Club World Cup or the Olympics.

Former Valencia and Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez was recently interviewed by Marca. Here is one of the questions that stood out to me.

Platini said in order to beat Barcelona you would need to play ‘catenaccio.' Do you agree?

You need to play good football, but there are no fixed rules because every team is different. It depends on how much quality you have. If you have high-quality players you can push them back and hope they don’t hit you on the counter-attack. If not, you need an alternative plan.

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