Madrid, December 2017 Part 1

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So 3:00am had arrived finally I was able to step outside my front door and make my way to Madrid for the 3rd time in a year and a half and 2nd time in 2017. I was mainly going to Madrid to watch Real Madrid versus Borussia Dortmund in the champions league. Bus journey was just under an hour which I made the most of to shut my eyes. The flight was at 6:25am so I had plenty of time to stroll through airport security and Dublin airport’s many retail shops with ease. Breakfast was a croissant and a cappuccino from Starbucks so now burger king 6am breakfast for me like most people do when they fly. I was flying Ryanair which I work with so I was able to go a staff travel and able to nab myself an emergency exit seat right at window so I was able to stretch my legs and get even more shut-eye but I spent more time watching the 2015 film Focus starting fresh prince himself Will Smith and Margot Robbie.

Arrival into the Spanish capital was just on time at 10:30am. So, after walking a good kilometre and a half getting through passport control and walking from terminal 1 to 3 just to get the metro it was a nice sit down when I finally got onto the metro to take me into the city centre. After a good 50mins of swapping metro lines 3 times I had finally at Puerta del Sol “Gate of the Sun”.

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Puerta del Sol

After checking into the hotel located of Gran Via the main street of Madrid. The room was very decent probably the best room I had stayed in all of 3 trips to Madrid. The rest of the afternoon was spent walking around the main park of Madrid El Retiro Park which was spectacularat night.

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El Retiro Park at night

Day 2 had arrived was an early enough start for a free 3-hour walking tour around the city hosted by Silva. We were brought all around the city from the Royal Palace to the opera house to retrio where I had been the night before. After wards we all went for a meal in a local restaurant. I had the most gorgeous steak with some Spanish beer.

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The Spanish steak

Days 3 plan was to visit the royal palace with Kim from Australia and Cynthia from Switzerland who I had met the previous day on the walking tour. The palace tour was self-guided one which was handy all u paid was the 8-euro fee I think it was and off you go with a map of the palace in hand. You went from the massive courtyard into fancy rooms housing the history of the Spanish royal family. We couldn’t stay long in each room as soon as we got into one it was full of Asian tourist with their selfie sticks getting in the way of your picture we were trying to take. After the palace tour we spent the day walking around Madrid looking at all the Spanish shops we don’t have at home this took up most of our afternoon. We had a meal together in a local bar with some strange-looking burgers. We said goodbye to one another afterwards as the girls were leaving the next day.

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Me, Kim and Cynthia at the Royal Palace

Day 4 the day of the match between Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund in the UEFA Champions League group stage. I’m goanna say this now this whole night was a dream. Upon arrival at the Santiago Bernabeu was this huge stadium lit up under the Spanish sky. The gates were open a good hour before kick-off which I took advantage of. I was seated right in the top stand which I literally sprinted up and out of breath by the end.

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Santiago Bernabeu

Once I found my seat I just took it all in as this was a night to remember. Shortly after I ha seat down the trams were out warming up. Dortmund obviously was met with a cheer of boos and for Real Madrid was the exact opposite -for them mostly the screams was for their superstar from Portugal  Cristiano Ronaldo arguably one of the world’s best. It’s always weird for me seeing these skilled players in person and not on TV or on a games console.

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View from my seat

25073186_1595874833823579_8122275752029473677_oMadrid made a very fast start to the game with scoring 2 goals inside the first 15 minutes. Young Borja Mayoral scored the first in the 8th minute. Then the main man himself gets one in the 15th minute Cristiano Ronaldo. Which was one of the best goals I have ever seen scored in which he cuts inside from the left and places the ball into the top hand corner from outside the box of the net leaving the goalkeeper rooted to his spot. Which was met with a deafening cheer from the home supporters. But Pierre Aubameyang would ruin the first half party by getting one back right before halftime in the 43rd minute leaving the sides 2-1 at halftime.

Cristiano Ronaldo

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Halftime Score

The 2nd half probably get off to the worst start for Madrid with conceding to another Aubameyang goal in the 48th minute. Now the Dortmund supporters had belief again about a win and had found their voice again. While Madrid supporters were in shock and in disbelief. The clock kept on ticking Madrid pushing for a goal to give them the victory. In which they did thanks to Lucas Vazquez in the 81st minute. I mean the place just erupted with noise. This goal turned out to be the killer blow in the match in which the game ended 3-2 to mighty Real Madrid. So, everyone including me went left the Bernabeu with smile on their faces well except for the Dortmund supporters.

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The final score

Join me in Madrid part 2 to read more about this trip…………..

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