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Madrid: We're Jealous of Barcelona


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Well, well well. About time they were honest about what's probably their biggest reason for their continued bidding:

Barcelona Olympics gave it international profile we envy, admits Madrid Mayor

March 21 - Madrid Mayor Ana Botella has admitted that Barcelona
has a higher profile on the international stage than her city because of
the success of the 1992 Olympics and Paralympics, which is proving a
powerful factor in the Spanish capital's efforts to bring the Games here
in 2020 as the two cities enjoy a long rivalry.


"There there was a before and an after [with Barcelona] and often, when you
travel abroad, when you say, 'I'm Spanish', people often know more about
Barcelona than they do Madrid," said Botella.

Botella has played a leading role this week in the visit here of the International
Olympic Committee (IOC) Evaluation Commission, chaired by Britain's Sir
Craig Reedie (pictured top), to inspect their bid, which is their third
consecutive campaign following failed efforts for 2012 and 2016, which
were awarded to London and Rio de Janeiro respectively.

Sir Craig, who played a crucial role in London's bid when they defeated
Madrid eight years, offered some encourgament to his hosts when he spoke
of how this bid had improved.

...

more: Insidethegames

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I'm not surprised whatsoever. I've even mentioned as such recently in other threads. It just irks them that the Catalans beat them to the Olympic punch & is looked upon as one of the most successful Olympic Games.

And from the sounds of it, if Madrid loses this race, too, they'll probably go for 2024, & forget anything about a Barcelona 2022 Winter bid! Can't have the Catalans have that piece of pie, too! As the old saying goes; "it you can't beat them, just join them"!

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I'm not surprised whatsoever. I've even mentioned as such recently in other threads. It just irks them that the Catalans beat them to the Olympic punch & is looked upon as one of the most successful Olympic Games.

And from the sounds of it, if Madrid loses this race, too, they'll probably go for 2024, & forget anything about a Barcelona 2022 Winter bid! Can't have the Catalans have that piece of pie, too! As the old saying goes; "it you can't beat them, just join them"!

Exactly, I think we've all known for ages that the Catalan-Castilian rivalry has always been the main driver for Madrid's ambitions.

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Exactly, I think we've all known for ages that the Catalan-Castilian rivalry has always been the main driver for Madrid's ambitions.

Similarly, though less obviously, Japan started angling for the Games in the wake of Beijing.

One could argue that jealousy is always a strong motivation -- perhaps even the primary one. Rio and South America jealous of the rest of the world. Next South Africa jealous of the rest of the world. The Middle East jealous of the rest of the world. Eventually Southeast Asia jealous of the rest of the world. Even the USA saying "What about us?" Olympic bids are largely ways of saying "We want what you have. We want 'in' to the popular crowd. We want to eat at the adults' table. " And the prettiest girl with the most expensive haircut and clothes usually gets her way.

And the jealousy continues....

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Actually, they are/will be riding on Barcelona's coattails going into the September IOC showdown because Barcelona will be hosting the 2nd most important World Championships this summer, the 2013 FINA Worlds. So if that makes a...to use a pun...terrific splash (and I don't see why it wouldn't), hopefully that goodwill will still be remembered by some IOC members when they convene in another Spanish-speaking city, Buenos AIres in September!!

Edited by baron-pierreIV
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Similarly, though less obviously, Japan started angling for the Games in the wake of Beijing.

Actually, Japan started to bid for the Summer Games after the Nagano 1998 Winter Games. They were in competition bidding against Beijing with Osaka.

Yeah, one could argue that jealousy motivates most, if not all bids. But at least the Japanese were bidding for the other seasonal set of Games & not another winter edition so soon. And when Osaka lost to Beijing, the Japanese took a break & didn't stubbornly come back (like Madrid did) when continental rotation & geopolitics weren't in their favor.

Madrid just seems so wreckless & stubborn, like a fiercely jealous little sister over her more popular, bigger sister, just wanting & constanty planning to outdo her at any moment. The Jan Brady syndrome is what Madrid is suffering from if you ask me. Not very compelling in the least.

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I don't think Tokyo has an Olympic envy of China...because remember as far back as 1940, they were already a designated host...except that pesky little scuffle called WW2 intervened. If anything, it's been the post-war PRC that has been envious of Japan and Korea.

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I don't think Tokyo has an Olympic envy of China...because remember as far back as 1940, they were already a designated host...except that pesky little scuffle called WW2 intervened. If anything, it's been the post-war PRC that has been envious of Japan and Korea.

Yes, Japan hosted first, but remember that post-WWII and especially in the 70s and 80s, Japan was the "it" country in Asia. Nobody likes being superseded and I remember reading some articles when Beijing won the vote for 2008 (beating Osaka, among others) that the Japanese were eager to prove they could keep pace with their increasingly powerful neighbor.

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Actually, Japan started to bid for the Summer Games after the Nagano 1998 Winter Games. They were in competition bidding against Beijing with Osaka.

Yeah, one could argue that jealousy motivates most, if not all bids. But at least the Japanese were bidding for the other seasonal set of Games & not another winter edition so soon. And when Osaka lost to Beijing, the Japanese took a break & didn't stubbornly come back (like Madrid did) when continental rotation & geopolitics weren't in their favor.

Madrid just seems so wreckless & stubborn, like a fiercely jealous little sister over her more popular, bigger sister, just wanting & constanty planning to outdo her at any moment. The Jan Brady syndrome is what Madrid is suffering from if you ask me. Not very compelling in the least.

"Why is everything always about Barça? Barça! Barça!! Barça!!!"

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Yes, Japan hosted first, but remember that post-WWII and especially in the 70s and 80s, Japan was the "it" country in Asia. Nobody likes being superseded and I remember reading some articles when Beijing won the vote for 2008 (beating Osaka, among others) that the Japanese were eager to prove they could keep pace with their increasingly powerful neighbor.

This is where I believe Tokyo and Madrid lack the power of Istanbul - they are ill timed in the narrative of their respective countries.

Tokyo '64 was Japan's big moment, and it has had two smaller moments since in Sapporo and Nagano. I'm not against repeat hosts, but in the wake of London's "inspire a generation" theme, Japan drops that momentum; its not youthful, but rather a country that has plateaued for the past few decades with an aging population, compared to its extremely youthful Asian neighbours.

Madrid is similar, in that in Spain's story Barcelona was that national moment in 1992. If this was so important to Madrid, their civic leaders should have fought harder at the time to put Madrid forward for 1992. I'm sure a Madrid 1992 Olympics would have been as revered today as Barcelona is. It's just not the right time, especially given the dire financial situation.

Turkey, comparatively, is growing, its got the youngest average population, its wealthy with a growing middle class, and its never hosted before: to top it off it is presenting one of the largest and most charismatic cities in Europe. Istanbul 2020 would be to Turkey what Beijing 2008 was to China or Tokyo 1964 was Japan. Personally, I think it is an opportunity for another great Olympic milestone. Tokyo and Madrid would hardly be milestones.

Edited by runningrings
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This is where I believe Tokyo and Madrid lack the power of Istanbul - they are ill timed in the narrative of their respective countries.

Tokyo '64 was Japan's big moment, and it has had two smaller moments since in Sapporo and Nagano. I'm not against repeat hosts, but in the wake of London's "inspire a generation" theme, Japan drops that momentum; its not youthful, but rather a country that has plateaued for the past few decades with an aging population, compared to its extremely youthful Asian neighbours.

Madrid is similar, in that in Spain's story Barcelona was that national moment in 1992. If this was so important to Madrid, their civic leaders should have fought harder at the time to put Madrid forward for 1992. I'm sure a Madrid 1992 Olympics would have been as revered today as Barcelona is. It's just not the right time, especially given the dire financial situation.

Turkey, comparatively, is growing, its got the youngest average population, its wealthy with a growing middle class, and its never hosted before: to top it off it is presenting one of the largest and most charismatic cities in Europe. Istanbul 2020 would be to Turkey what Beijing 2008 was to China or Tokyo 1964 was Japan. Personally, I think it is an opportunity for another great Olympic milestone. Tokyo and Madrid would hardly be milestones.

The main difference with 2020, though, versus "milestones", is that the IOC is faced with 3 difficult choices here, all with their own baggage & issues. And many articles out there on the subject mention how the IOC finds itself in a real "conundrum" of sorts bcuz in this race there's no clear-cut choice, like there was with Beijing & Rio. And while Istanbul may appear on the surface to be in that same category, it looks like the IOC may be looking for the "safer" choice this time around. And that points to Tokyo in this particular race. Even before South Africa finally decided that they weren't bidding this time around, many still argued that their win was still questionable, even though they certainly would've been a milestone host.

And while London's "inspire a generation" isn't in Tokyo's angle, I still don't think that aspect is what totally won it for London anyway. Their regeneration of a decaying part of the city is what really pushed the London bid over into the winner's circle, imho. Paris had a much less ambitious bid & wasn't as narrative focused but yet only lost by 4 votes. I'd say that's where Tokyo is in this race. It's still a very glamorous world-class city. Is the capital of the 3rd largest economy in the world, & the IOC already knows first-hand how well precise & organizational the Japanese really are. Something where Turkey is really an unknown quantity at this point. Especially with Rio in the background with possible concerns, in which the IOC has already taken a huge leap of faith with. For 2020, & in these trying global times, the IOC may probably want to take a sigh of relief & relax for a moment before going into uncharted waters yet again so soon. Especially if South Africa finally decides to come out & play for 2024, the IOC might want to save that 'milestone' card this time around.

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This is where I believe Tokyo and Madrid lack the power of Istanbul - they are ill timed in the narrative of their respective countries.

Tokyo '64 was Japan's big moment, and it has had two smaller moments since in Sapporo and Nagano. I'm not against repeat hosts, but in the wake of London's "inspire a generation" theme, Japan drops that momentum; its not youthful, but rather a country that has plateaued for the past few decades with an aging population, compared to its extremely youthful Asian neighbours.

Madrid is similar, in that in Spain's story Barcelona was that national moment in 1992. If this was so important to Madrid, their civic leaders should have fought harder at the time to put Madrid forward for 1992. I'm sure a Madrid 1992 Olympics would have been as revered today as Barcelona is. It's just not the right time, especially given the dire financial situation.

Turkey, comparatively, is growing, its got the youngest average population, its wealthy with a growing middle class, and its never hosted before: to top it off it is presenting one of the largest and most charismatic cities in Europe. Istanbul 2020 would be to Turkey what Beijing 2008 was to China or Tokyo 1964 was Japan. Personally, I think it is an opportunity for another great Olympic milestone. Tokyo and Madrid would hardly be milestones.

That sounds like a pretty fair analysis to me.

I do think it's interesting that so many people (sometimes myself included) seem to see the Olympic Games shining the spotlight on the most arresting part of the globe at a given time. There's something about it that's vaguely like picking a beauty queen. Very superficial, driven by peer pressure and popular perception.

The IOC talks about how sport is the heart of the Games, but when it comes to choosing a bid city, I'm not at all sure that's true. Among other things, it's probably safe to say that all the shortlisted cities are capable of staging the athletic events with the IOC's oversight. So then the IOC bases their choice on something else -- this inscrutable "x-factor". It's almost as if the IOC wants to be seen as the trend-setter, the style guru, the king-maker: "We have our finger on the pulse of the entire globe and the "it" destination for the present is....... "Istanbul!"

Istanbul is the "it" destination. 30 years ago it seemed a bit backward, unprepared and possibly scary. 30 years from now it will yesterday's discovery. They will have had their time in the sun and it will be time to hop over to some new international hotspot.

I suppose there's something exciting about all this, but it also feels a bit tiresome -- as if the IOC (and their fans) are just slaves of fashion, going wherever the winds of popularity and buzz may take them. Is there something electric about it? Sure. But I'm not entirely certain that it's admirable or respectable.

I'm just mulling this over. I wouldn't say that the above ideas are the only things driving the choice of a host city, but they certainly loom large.

Madrid could organize very enjoyable, successful Games. So could Tokyo. So could Istanbul. However, Istanbul is the belle of the ball. Istanbul's Games will feel like more of a "revelation" instead of a retread (why do we get bored so easily?) and they're promising to spend far more money. So, assuming Istanbul nails their evaluation and assuming the committee doesn't unearth any glaring defects, I think it's totally reasonable to view Istanbul as the odds on favorite to win.

I think I'm losing some respect for the race though.

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Living in Madrid (although I wasnt born here) is very sad all the comments that I read hear about my city. I even doubt that most of you ever visited Madrid or know really how the city is.

Of course we are jealous of Barcelona. I know Barcelona quite well, in fact, I have a lot of family there and visit the city quite often. Apart from being one of the nicest cities in Spain, the Olympics raised their profile around the world and today, when anybody thinks about a city in Spain, the think about Barcelona. Madrid on the other hand is an amazing city too but it is not so well know abroad although in the past few years that has changed a lot.

What Im trying to say is that it is not a bad thing trying to emulate other's success. Madrid saw how good the olympics were for the city, even nowadays they are profiting from it and I can´t blame them to try to do the same. Is that such a bad thing?

And about someone who said in a comment that Barcelona is the most important city of the two... that´s total lack of knowledge about the two cities. But again, thanks to the Olympics in part, people have in mind that Barcelona is out of this world and Madrid, as it is not so well know, it´s kind of shitty.

I think that everybody can perfectly defend or support the city they want, but I dont think it´s fair to attack this way a city like Madrid. The only thin I can say is that you are welcome to visit Madrid and if you do, I promise to show you around so you can see first hand how amazing this city is... so much different of the amazing Barcelona, but amazing for its own merits.

Have a nice day!

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Well... That is very predictable, Madrid is jelous that Barcelona has a popular identity and the games in 92 do helped in that. But I've been to both cities and certainlly the have nothing to be jelous off.

*they (Madrid)

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I think both are amazing cities, i know both, and they meant jaelous about olympics times. Obviously Andalusia in south is the best hehehe

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If Madrid jealous with Barcelona, why the Spanish OC didn't come with Madrid in 92 ? why they choose Barcelona over Madrid ? Madrid is their capital, they should choose Madrid over Barcelona at the 1st place

Because the Samaranches are from Barcelona...so naturally, their hometown first. And much as I like Madrid's bid, it is still TOO DAMN HOT in July and August.

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If Madrid jealous with Barcelona, why the Spanish OC didn't come with Madrid in 92 ? why they choose Barcelona over Madrid ? Madrid is their capital, they should choose Madrid over Barcelona at the 1st place

Well, just because Madrid is the capital doesnt mean everything has to be done in the same city. Thats the reason. And Barcelona was a very decent option , so decent that they hosted an amazing games.

And again, the city is not "jealous", they just saw the benefits of organizing the games and they are trying hard, even if they never get it. Although I think that the international promotion that the city is getting only with the bids is worth it.

Because the Samaranches are from Barcelona...so naturally, their hometown first. And much as I like Madrid's bid, it is still TOO DAMN HOT in July and August.

It is quite hot, but at least Madrid doesnt have the humidity that other places have in summer time as it's far away from the ocean. In Spain it gets dark in summer time quite late, even at 9.30 its not completely dark, and temperatures drop in the evening... its not like every event has to be placed at 3pm in the afternoon....

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All three cities are hot in July-August but Tokyo is much worse than the other two because of humidity and monsoon season. Istanbul I guess is a bit cooler than Madrid but more or less equal otherwise.

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