Born Into The Wrong Colors: The 5 Barcelona and Real Madrid Players Who Grew Up Supporting the Opposing Club
The intense rivalry between FC Barcelona and Real Madrid is arguably the most prominent in the world of sports. Their fierce competition on the field is matched by their off-field business endeavours, both striving to prove themselves as the best in the world.
The division caused by their rivalry is palpable, and the passion of the players and fans only adds to its beauty. Despite this, due to the immense stature of both clubs, players dream of playing for them at any cost, even if it means going against their childhood allegiances.
Throughout history, there have been players from both FC Barcelona and Real Madrid who grew up supporting the rival club but later joined the other. In this article, we will explore the top five players from each club who switched sides despite their initial loyalties.
Isco, is a Spanish midfielder who spent nine years with Real Madrid and was part of their Champions League-winning team five times. Isco’s time at Madrid ended disappointingly, but he was consistently recognized as a key player for the team.
During Zidane’s initial stint as manager, Isco was an integral part of the squad and experienced his most successful period with the club. Despite his significant history with Real Madrid, Isco actually supported FC Barcelona during his childhood, as evidenced by a photo of him wearing their shirt at a party that was shared online.
Neymar‘s Complex Relationship with Barcelona and Real Madrid
The relationship between Neymar and FC Barcelona has been a complicated one. Despite receiving tempting offers from Real Madrid and other clubs, Neymar chose to sign with Barcelona in 2013. However, he controversially departed the club in 2017. Despite this, Neymar later attempted to return to FC Barcelona from Paris Saint-Germain, but his efforts were in vain.
Neymar spent four seasons with FC Barcelona, during which time he developed a rich history with the club. However, in his early years, he dreamed of becoming a star player for Real Madrid. In an interview with Marca, while he was still playing for Santos, Neymar confessed his admiration for Real Madrid and his idolization of Zinedine Zidane.
Despite his age of 37, Luka Modric continues to be one of the world’s top midfielders and has surpassed expectations throughout his career. Although he currently dominates the midfield for Madrid, Modric was on the verge of signing with FC Barcelona in 2008, a club he had once supported.
One reason for Modric’s interest in joining FC Barcelona was his admiration for Johan Cruyff. In 2008, FC Barcelona reportedly offered him a contract and even presented him with the number 14 shirt that Cruyff had worn at the club. However, despite these efforts by the Catalan-based newspaper Mundo Deportivo, the club was unable to persuade Modric to sign with them.
The article discusses the significant impact of Zinedine Zidane on Real Madrid, both as a player and a manager. Zidane’s contributions helped elevate the club to unprecedented heights. Despite being regarded as an all-time great at Real Madrid, Zidane initially favoured FC Barcelona during his early days.
During an interview in his early career, Zidane revealed that he considered Juventus to be his preferred Italian club, and FC Barcelona to be his preferred Spanish football club. However, he later joined Real Madrid in 2001 and went on to achieve tremendous success with the club, which is well-known to football fans.
Andres Iniesta, a Spanish football legend, has a strong association with FC Barcelona. Despite leaving European football at the age of 34 in 2018, he couldn’t imagine himself wearing any other jersey than FC Barcelona’s. However, an old video has surfaced of him stating that Real Madrid is his favourite club, indicating his fondness for them. In the video, Iniesta even professed his love for Real Madrid with all his might.
Contrary to the video, the truth is that Andres Iniesta was never a Real Madrid fan, but a hardcore supporter of Albacete. However, his dislike for FC Barcelona began when they defeated Albacete 7-1, causing him to develop a soft spot for FC Barcelona’s arch-rivals, Real Madrid. Iniesta went on to join FC Barcelona’s academy in 1996, and the rest is history.