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Real Madrid's two mediocre friendlies don't prove a need for Falcao

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Diario As' campaign is not going anywhere

Michael Regan

It's surprising to see how Spain's second most important sports paper is completely under Jorge Mendes' control. As' coverage of the Falcao saga -if there's one- is simply ridiculous. Today, they have selected one of James' quotes regarding Falcao for their front page, but they also have one piece with the following headline: "Roma proves that Real Madrid needs a number 9". That's not an editorial, and they're drawing conclusions based on a friendly match in which two of the team's most important players weren't even there.

It's hard not to see that Real Madrid and Carlo Ancelotti wouldn't have played the game differently if there was something at stake. For instance, Gareth Bale was taken off in the 70th minute even though the team was losing. So no, Roma did not prove that Real Madrid needs a number 9.

But it doesn't end here. Manu Sainz -known for being really close to Mendes and Cristiano Ronaldo even though he said that the Portuguese was not going to sign a extension with Real Madrid- has been saying for weeks that Falcao will end up playing for los blancos. And his coworkers in As are helping him well. If As' readers aren't Falcao fans, it'll be hard for them to open this sports paper during the summer. Today, Real Madrid's four leading pieces on their website are about Falcao -five if we add Alfredo Relaño's editorial-.

This isn't about whether Real Madrid will/should sign Falcao. This is about the obvious decline of what used to be a respectable sports paper that has now fallen under Jorge Mendes' claws.