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Raul Almost Quit Madrid After Getafe

Much has been made in the Spanish press about the instant turnaround of Real Madrid after its Oct. 14 loss to Getafe. Since then, Los Merengues have recorded emphatic wins against Steaua Bucharest in the Champions League and then Barcelona in the La Liga clasico. There were whisperings prior to those matches that coach Fabio Capello told his players he would quit if his players ever played so poorly again. Apparently he isn't the only one. Captain Raul, who has played with Real Madrid for 12 years, also said he would quit the club "if things continued in the same vein," President Ramon Calderon told the Spanish media on Tuesday. "After what happened in Getafe he told me that he really suffered and that he couldn't sleep," Calderon said, adding that the player said he would leave and free the club from paying the rest of his contract. Few would deny that Raul is the heart and soul of Real Madrid. Despite a painfully noticeable dip in form over the last few seasons, Real Madrid's supporters have always been behind their beloved captain. Losing him would really be a sign that Real's glory years are behind it. However, there have been signs this season that the 29-year-old is finally returning to form. The striker has now scored five goals in his last five matches, and suddenly, there are calls for Luis Aragones to recall the Real Madrid man to his struggling Spain squad. In fact, the Spanish soccer federation wants to use Real's Santiago Bernabeu for its friendly against Denmark on March 24, but according to Calderon, "If Raul isn't in the squad, we won't let them play there."

Read the whole story at Reuters UK »

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