Stories of football and passion, of glories and greatness, of idols that wore both jerseys, of Buenos Aires and Madrid.
This is the historic relationship between River and Real Madrid, and thus was the meeting between the Presidents of El Millonario and the Merengue club. Rodolfo D’Onofrio traveled to Madrid on an official visit that has many meetings regarding the FIFA Football Stakeholders Committee, of which River is a member.
At the meeting, the Presidents gave each other historic and symbolic gifts worthy of being displayed at a museum. D’Onofrio gave his counterpart a framed letter dated July 24th, 1953, where the Spanish club presented Raiumundo Saporta as an agent authorized for the negotiation of the purchase of the player Alfredo Di Stéfano, who had played in Colombia for the last years. The letter is signed by the President of Real Madrid of the time, Santiago Bernabéu. Years later, Raimundo Saporta would become Vice-President of the club.
At his tour of the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium, D’Onofrio met with Mauricio Pochettino, Argentine coach of the Tottenham Hotspur Football Club, who was checking the field before the match between the English club and Real Madrid for the Champions League.
River’s highest authority received a Real Madrid jersey with his name and so did Mariano Taratuty (President of Planning at River), who toured the stadium with D’Onofrio.
Later, D’Onofrio gave to Pérez a book with pictures of Di Stéfano, known as “La Saeta Rubia”, from his time at River as a player and as coach.
In this way, River and Real Madrid share a long history beyond sharing players like Di Stéfano, Javier Saviola and Gonzalo Higuaín. The two clubs share a brotherhood and a vision of the present and the future that make them greater and greater.