Tag: Real Madrid

Cristiano Ronaldo’s Charity Work – Real Madrid Feature – Bridget Walsh

Cristiano Ronaldo’s Charity Work – Real Madrid Feature – Bridget Walsh

The Portuguese member of Real Madrid is known by fans around the world for his seemingly endless awards and recognitions. His talent is incomparable, and children dream of becoming the next “Cristiano Ronaldo.” His soccer skills are publicized and broadcasted for the whole world to see, but what about his accomplishments off the field and outside the soccer world?

Cristiano Ronaldo received his fourth Ballon d’Or in 2016.

He is a four-time Ballon d’Or and four-time Golden Boot winner in his time as a forward at Real Madrid. During this season, he has surpassed many records including all-time leading scorer in European Cup semi-finals and 400 goals with Real Madrid. In the Club’s most recent fixture against Atlético, he netted a hat trick and surpassed Real Madrid legend Alfredo Di Stéfano’s 11-goal total all time against Atlético. In this current season, he has appeared in 41 fixtures, scored 35 goals on 185 shots, had nine assists, and played 3,682 minutes. Real Madrid is currently preparing for the first leg of the Champions League semifinals against Atlético de Madrid. They are also tied in points for the top spot in La Liga with rival Barcelona.

Outside of his Club-related responsibilities, Ronaldo is very active by involving himself in charities and community relations. He is involved with and supports five charities, including Aid Still Required, Cahonas Scotland, Save the Children, UNICEF, and World Vision. He also supports 11 causes, such as abuse, adoption, fostering, orphans, AIDS & HIV, cancer, children, disaster relief, education, health, human rights, poverty, slavery, & human trafficking.

One of his most highlighted donations was in spring of 2014. “[He] received a request for a donation of football boots and a shirt to help raise $83,000 for a 10-month-old in need of an operation. Ronaldo not only donated the items, but also paid for the operation.” This not only showed the fans that he is a man who values helping others and putting the needs of others above his own, but it also showed that Ronaldo is a good teammate who is not afraid to accept the burdens of his teammates.

Another example of his active charity work was on March 16, 2017 when Ronaldo participated in an event sponsored by Save the Children as their “global artist ambassador,” a role he has held since 2013. One of the fun facts about Ronaldo is that he is constantly changing his hair style, so for his most recent makeover Ronaldo got advice from a Syrian Refugee teen named Omar. Omar participates in “barber training at Za’atari refugee camp in Jordan.” Ronaldo posted a photo of himself to his Facebook page with a hashtag and tag for the Save the Children foundation. Omar suggested “fading,” which is a popular hairstyle among the boys in his barber training program, but ultimately he said, “whatever [Cristiano Ronaldo] likes,” as his vision for Ronaldo’s new style.

Ronaldo poses with Omar and Omar’s drawing after his recent makeover.

This most recent interaction comes just three months after Ronaldo’s most public community services. In early January 2017, “Cristiano Ronaldo sends message of hope to Syrian children.” He made an extremely generous donation to those he called the “true heroes” amidst the deteriorating Syrian crisis situation. “The donation will help Save the Children provide much-needed food, clothing, emergency medical care and psychological support to vulnerable children and families who have been living for years under siege and under constant bombardment.” Ronaldo shared this message through a video found on all of his social media accounts. He has been very active throughout this conflict in Syria by “help[ing] keep the focus on the children front and center.” He even shared the hashtag, #Syria, throughout his social media accounts to keep his followers engaged in the efforts.

In October 2015, Cristiano Ronaldo and Abbott, a pharmaceutical company, partnered together in an effort to raise awareness of donating blood. “Cristiano Ronaldo inspires young people to donate blood” is such an important cause because “each year 234 million major operations are performed worldwide, many involving blood transfusions or treatments resulting in a continuous need for donations.” It was through this campaign that Ronaldo became the “first global ambassador for the BE THE 1 movement.” He first began donating blood when he experienced, firsthand, a teammate’s son in desperate need of blood donations. Ever since this encounter, Ronaldo donates regularly. “‘We can all make a difference by donating blood. Each donation can benefit up to three people in emergency room situations and for long-term medical treatments,'” said Ronaldo.

Because of his attitudes and behaviors seen on the field, fans would not imagine that Cristiano Ronaldo would be so involved with charity and community service. He has an overwhelming sense of self-confidence that gives fans the perception that he is very dedicated to his sport and his family and does not have time for other activities.

Cristiano Ronaldo posing with children involved in the Save the Children organization during one of their many events.

However, Ronaldo is actively involved especially with the Save the Children organization. He posts through his social media accounts whenever he participates in an event, but it is not necessarily to promote himself. Ronaldo does an excellent job through these posts of making his followers aware of the different causes he supports and other ways that they can also help the cause.

By participating in several charities and causes, Cristiano Ronaldo is building positive media relations with his publics. These actions allow his publics to view him in a different light than they would have if they just knew him based on his performances on the field. It is also important for such a large name within the Real Madrid organization to be active within his community because it helps to shape his image and provide the publics with information that help them relate his values and beliefs with those of his Club.

Because of his “super self-confidence” and flashy personality, fans would normally expect to see Ronaldo’s charity work publicized through every media outlet possible. This is not the case, which helps to build the positive relationship with the Real Madrid public. The Club is known for their quest for excellence and their professionalism, so by not obnoxiously or extensively posting about the good deeds he is doing, Cristiano Ronaldo is aligning with the positive relationship his Club has with their publics.

As an athlete, it is often difficult to dedicate quality time to anything besides the sport during the season. Fans should expect to see more involvement from Cristiano Ronaldo upon conclusion of the 2016-2017 season. Whether his next charity or community service project is with Save the Children, UNICEF, or any of the other causes he is active in, fans can expect the Real Madrid forward to add his own personal touch to it, such as selfies to help kids or donating blood to save lives.

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Real Madrid Release (April 24-April 29) – Bridget Walsh

Real Madrid Release (April 24-April 29) – Bridget Walsh

Game Summaries:

Wednesday April 26: Deportivo vs. Real Madrid at the Riazor in La Liga

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Madrid run out handsome winners at Riazor

In a high scoring match, the Whites still have the La Liga title in sight. Real Madrid defeated Deportivo 6-2 in a dominant effort from the Whites. Madrid scored early, less than a minute into the match on a Morata goal assisted by Isco. The lead could have grown substantially throughout the first half if not for the performance of Deportivo’s Lux in goal.

Real Madrid’s other goals came from Isco, Vázquez, Casemiro, and two from Rodríguez. In a postgame interview, Isco stated that “it was a well-rounded game and the score line reflects that.”

Saturday April 29: Real Madrid vs. Valencia at the Santiago Bernabéu in La Liga

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No let-up from Real Madrid in quest for La Liga crown

With just four matches remaining in La Liga competition, Real Madrid came out with a strong performance against Valencia, winning 2-1 and clinching three points toward the La Liga crown.

The goals were scored by Cristiano Ronaldo on a header and Marcelo in the 87th minute to secure the win. By scoring in this match, Real Madrid has netted at least one goal in their last 58 matches.

Player News:


Isco’s 10 goals in La Liga

Isco’s goal against Deportivo set his new season high for goals in La Liga competition at 10. His previous mark of nine goals was set in his 2012-2013 season while he was playing for Málaga. This achievement places Isco at third goalscorer in the competition behind Cristiano Ronaldo and Morata.

James makes it five Real Madrid doubles

In Real Madrid’s 2-1 victory over Deportivo, James RodrÍguez scored twice marking his fifth double. The last time James had a double was in the first leg of the Copa del Rey against Sevilla. Overall in his career at the Club, James has doubled five times, three in La Liga and two in the Copa del Rey.

Marcelo, the foreign-born player with the most La Liga wins for Real Madrid

Real Madrid’s victory over Valencia marked the 212th win for Marcelo in La Liga competition. This game was also special for Marcelo because he netted the winning goal for the Whites. This mark also surpasses his compatriot Roberto Carlos as the foreign-born player with the most La Liga wins, even over teammates Cristiano Ronaldo, Di Stéfano, and Pepe.

Other Relevant Team Related News:

Julia Roberts’ El Clásico experience

Check out this video from Julia Roberts’ visit to the Santiago Bernabéu during El Clásico, Real Madrid’s matchup with Barcelona. The Hollywood star received her own Real Madrid jersey, interacted with various players, and more.

Upcoming Matches:

Tuesday May 2: Real Madrid vs. Atlético de Madrid at the Santiago Bernabéu in First Leg of Champions League Semi-Final

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Saturday May 6: Granada vs. Real Madrid at the Estadio Nuevo Los Cármenes in La Liga

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After Ronaldo and Messi: What’s next?

After Ronaldo and Messi: What’s next?

After Ronaldo and Messi: What’s next?- A look at the El Clasico, the Champions League, and the dominant league in Europe after the departure of the two stars.

The stage is set. Your team is in a battle for the top of the table. In your way stands the other team with the same exact objective. On each side, a superb, once in a generation-type player is begging for the opportunity to be the hero and bring a miracle to their fans on a grand stage. This is the scene of this past weekend’s El Clasico. Real Madrid and Barcelona faced off with Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi on each side.

Now think, what does this rivalry look like without Ronaldo and Messi? This is a question that is being highly discussed at the moment by experts, analysts, and fans alike. It is also a situation that is going to be the reality sooner or later (probably sooner considering these players are 32 and 29 years old, respectively). Where do Real Madrid and Barcelona go next? How do you replace once in a generation type players?

The simple answer to that last question is: you don’t.

These players are considered “once in a generation” for a reason, you can not assume there will be another like them anytime soon. Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have created a rivalry between the two of them that is not likely to be matched. Since 2008, no other player has won a Ballon d’Or or FIFA Player of the Year Award (although these awards were merged for six of the past nine years). Ronaldo first won the prestigious award in 2008, then Messi won for four consecutive years from 2009-2012. Ronaldo then took back the award from 2013-2014. Once again, Messi regained the title in 2015, and finally, the most recent Ballon d’Or went back to Ronaldo. There is rarely any conversation about a third candidate, but rather just which of these two, it will go to in any particular year.

imgres.jpg(Pictured: Ronaldo and Messi playing for Madrid and Barca)

     These awards are not given out lightly. Every single award was earned and achieved based on tangible accomplishments by these two, and for good reason. For example, in that same nine-year span in which they won all those Ballon d’Or’s, “both have averaged more than a goal per league game, and between them have won six out of nine Champions Leagues (including Ronaldo’s victory with Manchester United in 2008).” After the two of them, according to an ESPN article by Simon Kuper on a similar subject, the next-best players lag far behind. Kuper pointed out that if you “compare them with the next-best forwards of our time: Luis Suarez averaged over a goal a game in just one of his seven seasons in top-class leagues. Zlatan Ibrahimovic managed it once in 13.” This just proves, even more, the point that they are in a league of their own. Not even the next-best players can be compared to their elevated level of play.

Some experts argue that even without Ronaldo and Messi, Real Madrid and Barcelona would still be the two strongest teams in the Champions League. This may be true for the immediate future following the retirement of the two superstars. However, this dominance can not last forever. All things come to an end, just as Spain is dominant at the moment, there was a time when “Italian clubs, even Dutch clubs, dominated Europe.” Just as the Roman Empire fell, the empire of Spanish football dominance is likely to steadily decline after the departure of Messi and Ronaldo. This could have implications on the El Clasico rivalry.

In an interview discussing the probability to La Liga’s Champions League dominance coming to an end after the departure of Messi and Ronaldo, Stewart Robson commented on the fact that the Premier League is just not up to the level of the Spanish clubs. He stated that “at the moment you look at the Premier League and only Leicester got through to the quarterfinals; Manchester City weren’t good enough, Arsenal weren’t good enough, and Chelsea didn’t qualify last year.” He then went on to make the claim that even if Messi was hurt for most of the next season and Ronaldo retired, Madrid and Barcelona would still be the best in Europe. In the same interview Craig Burley pointed out that dominance is cyclical, and while the Spanish teams would obviously be slightly weakened without the likes of their stars, that Barcelona and Real Madrid “still have the clout to go out and buy their top players” and will continue to dominate at this point, since the Premier League is currently struggling.

However, the Kuper article that was mentioned before suggested that this continued trend of La Liga dominance and Premier League struggle will not last. Money is the largest factor contributing to a good club, and Real Madrid and Barcelona certainly have the money, but so do other teams. As can be seen in the following graphic, Manchester United lead the way with revenues of €689 million in 2015-16. These leading numbers came in a down year for the club on the field, where they “exited the lucrative Champions League after the group stage.” While “Barca and Madrid lead global soccer in commercial deals… once Messi, Ronaldo and Spain’s golden generation fade, these clubs will be less appealing to sponsors.” This should be worrying for the Spanish side since Premier League teams are already making strides to close the talent gap. Manchester United paid a “world-record fee of $116 million for Paul Pogba” in an attempt to prepare for the future where they could have the best active player in the world.

0406_socclassico_1296x1000.png(Pictured: Chart of revenues of the top 3 teams from 1996-2016)

     With all that being said, Real Madrid and Barcelona are still the best teams in Europe at the moment. Even in the future, if the Premier League takes over as the most dominant league in European football, the Spanish clubs will continue to have a presence. Even though the rivalry that is Messi versus Ronaldo will soon end, the El Clasico rivalry will continue. The two teams have met 266 times in history, and the rivalry has become much more than a game. With each team having historically successful teams, political oppositions of the cities, and incredibly identifiable players, this rivalry is one that has stood the test of time and will continue to be one of the most engaging rivalries in international soccer. In the latest installment on April 23, “an early estimation for the global audience tuning into to Sunday’s game was 650 million who tuned into the Bernabeu action in more than 185 countries.” With numbers like these, it is hard to expect a drastic decline because of one or two players departing, even if they are the best in the world. These clubs each have a fierce fan base, with a growing following in countries, such as the United States, that are new to the international football scene. If these clubs can continue to grow their following while they are in this “prime” era, they will no doubt continue to have an enormous, dedicated fan base that will continue to grow and support each of these clubs.



Featured Image via: http://soccerslide.com/messi-vs-ronaldo-top-10-goals/

In story image credit: http://www.espnfc.us/uefa-champions-league/2/blog/post/3096715/once-cristiano-ronaldo-and-lionel-messi-fade-so-will-the-european-dominance-of-barcelona-and-real-madrid


Real Madrid Release (April 12th-April 15th)- Bridget Walsh

Real Madrid Release (April 12th-April 15th)- Bridget Walsh

Game Summaries:

Wednesday April 12: Bayern Munich vs. Real Madrid at Allianz Arena in First Leg of the Champions League Quarter Final

Madrid  come from behind to take first step towards the semifinals

Cristiano Ronaldo netted both goals in the second half to secure the victory. Madrid fell behind in the 25th minute on a header from Munich’s Arturo Vidal assisted by Thiago. Besides this highlight for Munich, Madrid dominated the remainder of the match, efficiently executing their game plan.

The tie between Real Madrid and Bayern Munich will be determined on Tuesday April 18th.

Saturday April 15: Sporting vs. Real Madrid at El Molinón in La Liga

An Isco brace sees Real Madrid maintain top spot

With key players benched for the match, midfielder Isco stepped up and delivered two goals, the second coming in the 90th minute, to help lead Real Madrid in La Liga competition. The Whites played from behind the whole match, but they were able to respond to each of Sporting’s goals with Isco’s two goals and Morata’s lone goal.

Madrid earned three more points to add to their lead atop La Liga, and they put six games between the competition with the victory.

Player News:

Cristiano Ronaldo, selected as the Champions League player of the week

Ronaldo was key in the Whites’ victory over Bayern Munich in the First Leg of the Champions League Quarterfinals match. He scored twice, including the 100th of his career in European competition.

Danilo makes 50th competitive appearance for Real Madrid

Danilo appeared in his 50th competition as a White against Sporting on Saturday. His first appearance for Madrid came when they faced Sporting on 23 August 2015 in a 0-0 draw. This milestone is coming in just Danilo’s second year on the first team.

Kovacic, who is also in his second season with the club, earned his 50th career win against Sporting on Saturday. He has appeared in 66 matches and has scored three goals in his career as a White.

Other Relevant Team Related News:

Real Madrid to get police escort to Allianz Arena as extra security added

After the bomb attack on the Borussia Dortmund’s team bus, German police put extra security measures in place on Real Madrid’s trip from their hotel to the arena prior to their fixture in the Champions League Quarterfinal with Bayern Munich. The UEFA released a statement stating that there would be additional efforts at all three of Wednesday’s Champions League games.

Real Madrid to play 2017 All-Star Game against the Stars of the MLS

As the current Champions League champions, Real Madrid will face the Major League All-Star players in the 2017 All-Star Game on August 2 in Chicago, Illinois. This is the first appearance for La Liga in an All-Star game.

Upcoming Matches:

Tuesday April 18: Real Madrid vs. Bayern Munich at the Santiago Bernabéu in Second Leg of Champions League Quarterfinal

Sunday April 23: Real Madrid vs. Barcelona at the Santiago Bernabéu in La Liga

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Real Madrid Weekly Release (April 5-April 11): Cara McHenry

Real Madrid Weekly Release (April 5-April 11): Cara McHenry

Real Marid (April 5-11)

  • Recent Outcomes:

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The Blancos’ regained the top position in the La Liga race with two wins and a draw against Liga competition last week. Real Madrid is currently 3 points ahead of the 2nd place team, Barcelona, and 10 points ahead of 3rd place Atlético.

  • Strong Start: Win vs. Leganés

Real Madrid is back atop the La Liga after the 4-2 win against Leganés. Madrid started off strong with 3 goals coming in quick succession in the 15th, 18th and 23rd minutes. However, Leganés did not go down without a fight, scoring just as quickly as Madrid with two goals, one in the 32nd minute, and then again at the 35th. Real punctuated the game with a final goal in the 49th minute to give the final score of 4-2.

  • Madrid Derby Recap

Real won on every technical aspect of the April 8th game, except for goals. Real possessed the ball longer, had twice as many shots, 4 more corners, and fewer fouls. However, thanks to a late equalizing goal by Griezmann the heroics of Atlético’s defense, the Madrid Derby ended in a 1-1 draw. Pepe scored the lone goal for Real before being taken out in the 67th minute due to an injury that was later diagnosed as two broken ribs.

  • Update on Pepe

The Club has confirmed the injury Pepe suffered in the game against Atletico Madrid. The official Club statement explained, “After the examinations carried out today on Pepe at the Sanitas La Moraleja University Hospital, he has been diagnosed with fractures in seventh and eighth ribs on the left side.” The defender is expected to be out for at least a month, likely longer. This means he will miss much of the Champions League Final games. This leaves coach Zinedine Zidane with two major injuries to his back line, with Raphael Varane already on the injury reserve.

  • What’s Next?

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Madrid continues both La Liga and Champions League play next week, facing Bayern Munich twice and also playing Sporting once. Three games in just 7 days will test the injury-stricken Madrid side. After a short break (4 days), the action will continue with an El Clasico in La Liga play on April 23rd.

  • Next Fixture: Bayern Munich

The first leg of the Champions League Quarter Final begins today, March 12th. Madrid will be missing key player Pepe due to broken ribs. Raphael Varane is also out due to injury, meaning Sergio Ramos and Nacho are the two options for front-line center-backs.


Sources: http://www.goal.com/en/news/722/la-liga/2017/04/08/34429362/real-madrid-dealt-pepe-injury-blow-as-defender-suffers




Potential Score for Under Armour

Potential Score for Under Armour

FIFA World Cup reigning champions, Real Madrid, is deliberating to determine who their next kit sponsor will be. Adidas is a lucrative sportswear manufacturing company worldwide, but especially within the football circuit. As stated on Real Madrid’s website, Adidas has been a sponsor of Real Madrid since 1998 with an extension of their contract in 2011. Real Madrid’s current Adidas contract runs through 2020. It is said that there is a strong possibly that Under Armour will be the next sponsor of Real Madrid. Under Amour is looking to be recognized in the European market of sportswear. If this becomes reality there are not only business implications such as brand alignment, but also sociocultural implications that will effect this massive decision.

As confirmed on forbes.com, the potential contract between Under Armour and Real Madrid is worth at least $160 million, and if signed, could be one of biggest sponsorship deals in the history of football. Any sportswear company would be lucky to sponsor Real Madrid as they are the most valued football franchise for the past 11 years. According to Forbes, as of the 2016 valuations, Real Madrid is worth over three billion dollars.

Adidas headquarters and manufacturing plants are primarily based in Germany. Adidas is one of the largest manufacturing companies in Europe. On the other hand, Under Armour is an American based company that manufactures sportswear as well. Affirmed by fortune.com, “Losing the No. 2 spot (in Sport Brand Position) was especially bruising for Adidas, as it generates more than $18 billion in global sales annually vs. just about $4 billion for Under Armour last year”. According to fortune.com, losing the number two sport was discouraging to Adidas because they are more entrenched in the American sportswear culture from a historical perspective.

Also, Adidas has been around since 1949 and Under Amour has only existed since 1996. However, in 2016 Adidas regained the number two spot of sport brand position behind Nike.

This possible sponsor switch has sociocultural implications. As a result of Under Armour being an American brand could causes fans and followers to be less accepting of a European brand and vice versa.

Another aspect of this deal to consider is if Real Madrid brand aligns with Under Armour. Real Madrid positions themselves as a global brand by being a winning and well-known franchise. Current prominent sponsors of Real Madrid are Audi, Hugo Boss, and Microsoft. Real Madrid’s corporate sponsors are upscale, and well-known global brands. A likely strategy behind Under Armour’s interest in being the official kit sponsor for Real Madrid could be the strategic association of being top of the market as many of Real Madrid’s sponsors are in the top of their respective industry categories. The question at hand is if Real Madrid’s sponsors align with Under Armour and their brand recognition strategy. Under Armour has a good reputation, but it is not Adidas. As reported by investopedia.com, Adidas is entrenched in market segments domestically and abroad where it has significant brand loyalty relative to its competition. Whereas, Under Armour has not broken into the European markets and is primarily based in the United States.

However, as mentioned by Forbes, in 2012 Under Armour owned by billionaire Kevin Plank hired former Adidas executive Karl-Heinz Maurath to run its International Business department. As affirmed by Bloomberg, before joining Under Armour Maurath served for 22 years in various leadership positions with Adidas, including Senior Vice President. This could be used to Under Armour’s advantage because Maurath is familiar with Adidas’s international business model and can challenge it because of his inside knowledge and experience. Found on Forbes, stated by Plank himself, “We believe the future success of our brand depends on developing our business outside of North America”. If Under Armour secures this deal it will be another step in the right direction in breaking into the international market.

Tottenham made it public that they will not renew with Under Armour. According to Forbes, Under Armour began a five-year deal in 2012 as the uniform sponsor of Tottenham Hotspur. However, Tottenham switched their kit sponsor for the 2017-2018 season. Tottenham will be sporting Nike during this season. It was stated via espnfc.com that the reason behind the switch was that Nike offered three times the amount supplied by Under Armour in hope that Nike could have a say in a naming-rights deal for the club’s new stadium, scheduled to be ready for the start of the 2018-19 season.

On the other hand Southampton F.C. has entered into a seven year contract with Under Armour. FC St Pauli also entered in to a partnership agreement with Under Armour in 2016, but have not released the duration of the contract.

If Under Armour signs the contract with Real Madrid, Tottenham leaving Under Armour will be on the back burners of everyone minds because Real Madrid has such a substantial global reputation, recognition, and experience with sponsoring other football clubs.

In addition, another speculation is that this could be a money grab for Real Madrid as they do not have to do anything additional in order to make Adidas more popular in European markets. Real Madrid will continue to win titles and matches and have well known players, which in itself will help make a dent into the European markets as the official sponsor.

However, Under Armour is a prominent brand in the sportswear market, but not fully in the international market let alone the European market as of yet. Under Armour does have many player endorsements which aids to their popularity in the United States, but does not help their international challenge. Under Armour being a United States brand also could interfere socioculturally by having Europeans not fully backing the switch.

With all of that said, the right decision for Real Madrid would be to stay with Adidas as there is history there. Under Armour is not experienced in the European market of sportswear, which could be challenging for a positive result financially if Real Madrid follows through with Under Armour.

(Featured picture found via: http://www.footyheadlines.com/2017/02/under-armour-real-madrid-17-18-concept-kit.html )