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    Spanish team: Luis Enrique in the queue | Sports | The USA Print


    Luis Enrique, against Portugal in Braga this Tuesday.
    Luis Enrique, against Portugal in Braga this Tuesday.HUGO DELGADO (EFE)

    Queues, whether at gas stations or supermarkets, have become the best demoscopic instrument that democracy has endowed us with since radio announcers stopped asking the question “do you study or work?”. Any controversy can be transferred to the tedium of a long queue, where time and the desire to chat abound for obvious reasons. After all, there is nothing better to liven up the wait because one soon gets bored of looking at the ground or mentally counting the millions of euros that he does not have.

    “What luck we had in Portugal,” says my father without addressing anyone in particular. He has always liked to set himself up as the instigator of this type of debate, I don’t know why, and right away a man of his own age appears —I guess— who sticks his head out of the conga to agree with him and add that he is happy for the Spanish National Team —you can see it in his dark glasses—, but it takes a lot for him to get used to the leadership of a coach as rude as Luis Enrique. And at this point I must confess that the gentleman in question does not express himself exactly in these terms, something that would seem almost obvious even without having pointed it out, but sometimes it is worth softening certain words to prevent the outburst from becoming an important part of the discussion.

    The Spaniard, like Clemente or Luis Aragonés before him, has highlighted the two great types of fans who still dedicate a significant part of their time to the future of the national team. On the one hand we have the patriotic, visceral fan, willing to spill every last drop of his blood for Spain, but without ruling out a cheap sale of defeat for the sheer pleasure of taking down a coach who irritates him, who does not represent him : the country demands sacrifices that the country itself understands. The other, more a spectator than a fan, without greater patriotic desires than to know that he is covered in case of illness or if he dies abroad, perhaps with disruptive desires, he even ends up celebrating the triumphs of Spain by reaffirming the rebel leader and pissing off the adversary social, his soccer nemesis: his rabbit on the other side of the mirror, which Los Ilegales sang. He has probably seen too many Star Wars movies and read David Trueba, but who can blame him for such things at this point in his life.

    Evidently, it is a broadly defined classification in which other very fashionable variables are not taken into account, such as regionalism (“why don’t you take Iago Aspas?”), or national Madrid fans, eternally offended because the national team Española does not play in white and jumps to the Santiago Bernabéu with the anthem of the Décima thundering in each game: if there is something a national coach must be clear about, it is that he cannot please everyone. And that is something that Luis Enrique learned from a very young age, which is why he limits himself to risking his own mustaches with a group of soccer players who stick to each point of his particular catechism.

    The results are obvious: a national team ranked among the top four in the three official competitions held since his appointment and an endless discussion that entertains any melancholy wait, but that does not help, at all, the proper functioning of the queues.

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