Mallorca Back On Track

Real Mallorca bounced back from the disappointment of losing to Espanyol with a 2-0 home win against their other promotion rivals Almeria. A penalty from Abdon and a great team goal converted by Salva Sevilla gave them the points. Then last night they got a hard fought 0-1 victory at Logroñés. The only goal of the game came from Antonio Sanchez in the first half and it continues their remarkable record of not having lost away so far this season. 

Next up is a home game against Cartagena next Sunday at 18.15. 

Atlético Baleares according to their coach Jordi Roger have 5 games left, which equates to 5 finals. They start this weekend away at the leaders San Sebastián and next Wednesday they play Navalcarnero at home. All must win games if Baleares want to move into the next round of games where they will have a chance of promotion.

It’s a big ask but they’ve proved they can live with the best but need consistency. 

UD Poblense got a creditable 1-1 draw away at Real Madrid Castilla. Madrid fielding Mallorcan born Pablo Ramon and Menorcan born Xavier Sintes, two players I talked about earlier in the season. UD probably need at least a win and a draw from their last three games.

UD Ibiza have worryingly hit a sticky patch at the wrong end of the season. Their last four they’ve won one drawn one and lost two. They have three games left and they will of course definitely progress but they need to get back to what they were doing earlier in the season. 

Peña Deportiva’s form has gone the other way. In their last Five games they’ve won two and drawn three and look to have maintained their position in the league. One more win should see them do it. 

In Tercera Group A, it looks like a fight between Andratx and Ibiza Pitiusas for the top spot. Andratx drew 2-2 away at Manacor yesterday, giving Ibiza a chance to close the gap to just one point if they can beat Genova today. 

In Tercera Group B, Platges de Calvia are still the team to beat. They’re five points clear of the chasers with a game in hand. Good to see Formentera in second, followed by Real Mallorca B. 

In Division Honor San Francisco got a 92nd minute winner last week to avenge their defeat in Menorca against At. Villacarlos. They play top of the league Espanyol today, who are just three points clear of second placed Barcelona. The last game of the season sees Barcelona v Espanyol! 

In youth football there’s still no confirmed date for a restart of games. The new restrictions say there can now be contact in training, which to be honest is ridiculous as how do you think they were training before? Hopefully something will be sorted next week. 

Take care everyone. 

Richie presents the Radio One Mallorca Breakfast show Monday to Friday 07.30-11.00am on 93.8fm in Mallorca and 102fm in Calvià, online at www.radioonemallorca.com on mobile through their free App for IPhone & Android, The Tunein Radio App, iTunes, the Spanish TDT TV service and all smart speakers. If you can’t hear him on the radio then you’ll find him working at Pirates Adventure the islands number one night out and every now and again he may make an understudy appearance! 

Follow him on Twitter @DadTaxi1 & Instagram @dad.taxi or feel free to email him at rprior@globobalear.com 

Light At The End Of A Very Long Tunnel

After nearly a year there is finally light at the end of the tunnel. I don’t know about you but the announcement from Boris Johnson actually gave me a lift. In two weeks time it will be a whole year since this nightmare began and to actually be able to look forward to something is a real fillip. 

I don’t know anybody who said last March, well that’s us stopping for a whole year! All you doom mongers out there who bang on about how can he name dates, well you may be right but it’s given a lot of people a little hope for the future. Many people have struggled throughout this and an offer of change for the better is a good thing. Most people I’ve spoken to have been buoyed by the news and all of a sudden of travel and holidays are back on the menu. 

I spoke to a couple of people in the industry this week to see what destinations were doing well. 

Andy Brewer, Sales Manager at Blue Sea Holidays said, “the current winners are Tenerife, Crete, Corfu, Lanzarote and Rhodes.

By and large Spain hasn’t seen the surge in bookings that the Eastern end of the Med has seen although there has been an increase.

Almost all bookings are August onwards with a few June and some July.

The uptick whilst very welcome will probably peak at current level (which is still way down on what would be considered normal at this time of year) until such time as there is a more formal announcement of a beginning.

What the new protocols for travel are (ie quarantine, vaccine passports etc) will have a huge bearing on what sort of summer we will see –  Spain so needs to get a move on.

Everyone is so much more positive than a week ago and that’s great news.”

Nicky who works for Tui told me “I would say Turkey, Spain and Greece are doing well. Cruises are really popular but the cruise industry like land based holidays don’t know when they will be able to start again. Canaries is really popular for winter as always and people are tending to book from July onwards hoping that all be be ok to travel by then. 

Majorca is always the most popular Spanish destination with September and October still a top seller for families that want a short flight and not too far from home.”

So what’s the news our end?

I am actually going to praise our Government in a back handed kind of way. Albeit they were to blame in the first place. To take credit for the numbers coming down because of the restrictions they’ve put out there is a bit much considering they created the problem in the first place. I saw a headline from the President saying “we’ve brought the numbers down by 49%”, when you were the ones who had got them that high! After the debacle of the holidays early December, Christmas, New Year and Three Kings, they finally got their act in order. So to be honest it was inevitable firstly the numbers would rise and by bringing the restrictions in they would fall. I think this is why they are now being over cautious and relaxing the restrictions slower. They have finally realised that a long term plan has many more advantages than a short term one. I have said before that Easter should be forgotten about. We know now that international travel won’t happen particularly from the UK but we really shouldn’t risk National travel either. I realise this is tough for all of us but we must look to the Summer. This island will struggle to exist properly without it. I have spoken to bar owners, shop owners, restaurant owners and lots of people in the travel industry and every single one of them see the vaccine as the key to Mallorca working this Summer. 

Take care everyone and enjoy your Weekend! 

Richie presents the Radio One Mallorca Breakfast show Monday to Friday 07.30-11.00am on 93.8fm in Mallorca and 102fm in Calvià, online at www.radioonemallorca.com on mobile through their free App for IPhone & Android, The Tunein Radio App, iTunes, the Spanish TDT TV service and all smart speakers. If you can’t hear him on the radio then you’ll find him working at Pirates Adventure the islands number one night out and every now and again he may make an understudy appearance! 

Follow him on Twitter @DadTaxi1 & Instagram @dad.taxi or feel free to email him at rprior@globobalear.com 

Five Teams In The Hunt For Promotion

Real Mallorca couldn’t turn their dominance into goals against their promotion rivals Espanyol last week. It was a case of not taking their chances when their opponents did. The guilty player was Amath who in the first half missed two guilt edged opportunities. It was more of a surprise given that he’d scored in the last three games. He did redeem himself in the second half with an equaliser but a defensive error by the normally dependable Valjent gave Espanyol the victory. Mallorca finished last Weekend on top by 2 points from Espanyol and Almeria who lost at Leganés. Yesterday Espanyol went top after beating Sabadell. The game of the weekend is today at 16.00 when Mallorca take on Almeria. For me it’s a must not lose game for Mallorca. Obviously a win is great but a draw puts them ahead of Almeria on a head to head basis after they beat them 0-1 away. Two other teams have crept back into the race for the automatic promotion places, Leganés and Sporting Gijón. They are both on 46 points just 5 points behind second placed Mallorca and 6 points behind the leaders Espanyol. It’s squeaky bum time! 

Frustrating for Atlético Baleares as their games last weekend and this weekend were called off after a Covid outbreak. They will now host San Sebastián next Sunday the 28th of February and Navalcarnero the following Wednesday March 3rd. Both games kick-off at 12 midday. 

An agonising 90th penalty left UD Poblense pointless after they’d fought back twice against Rayo Majadahonda, eventually losing 2-3. There’s four teams at the bottom on 12 points so they need to try and get something out of todays away game at Real Madrid Castilla. 

A dominant 3-0 win against Valencia Mestalla got UD Ibiza back to winning ways and cemented their position at the top of their league. They’re away at Hercules today.

A fantastic 0-1 result for Peña Deportiva away at La Nucia. A home game today against Orihuela and a win could go a long way to helping them to maintain their position in the current league. 

In Tercera Group A it looks like a fight between Andratx and Ibiza Pitiusas. Andratx lost 0-1 at home to Constancia and Ibiza won 0-2 at Collerense. Third placed Manacor could only draw 2-2 with Portmany.

In Group B it doesn’t look like anybody are going to catch Platges de Calvia at the top. They are nine points clear at the top from Real Mallorca B and PE Sant Jordi. 

In Division Honor San Francisco avenged their defeat from Menorca’s  Atlético Villacarlos with a 92nd minute winner. Of our other teams Penya Arrabal play Real Mallorca today in a crunch game. 

Still no confirmation of a return of youth football but it still looks like the weekend of the 6th and 7th of March for Juvenil, Cadetes and infantil. But no date yet for the return of Alevin, Benjamin and pre-Benjamin. 

Take care everyone. 

Richie presents the Radio One Mallorca Breakfast show Monday to Friday 07.30-11.00am on 93.8fm in Mallorca and 102fm in Calvià, online at www.radioonemallorca.com on mobile through their free App for IPhone & Android, The Tunein Radio App, iTunes, the Spanish TDT TV service and all smart speakers. If you can’t hear him on the radio then you’ll find him working at Pirates Adventure the islands number one night out and every now and again he may make an understudy appearance! 

Follow him on Twitter @DadTaxi1 & Instagram @dad.taxi or feel free to email him at rprior@globobalear.com 

SOS Turismo

For me it’s a damning indictment for this Government here in the Balearics that on an island that depends pretty much on tourism, we are still none the wiser whether we’re going to get a Summer Season here or not. Last Friday a Facebook campaign started called SOS Turismo. A week later they have just over 28,500 members. The Government have said whilst they recognise the group they’re not sure whether it’s the right message to send out. What are people supposed to do, after eighteen months of nothing just sit and wait? 

SOS of course is a universally known cry for help, Save Our Souls. 

But to be honest it could be;

Save Our Season

Save Our Summer

Save Our Sanity

Monday apparently is D-Day in the Uk when Boris says whether Brits can go on holiday. Nicola Sturgeon the Scottish First Minister has already said it’s unlikely that Scots will be allowed abroad this summer. The problem with all these announcements is nobody really has a clue what the future holds. The only thing you can hang your hat on is the vaccine and the quicker it gets rolled out the better. 

Which means that the country or destination that get themselves sorted are going to be ahead of everyone else. 

The graph below shows you the latest data. 

This appeared in the Bulletin this week, make sure you read and read again the paragraph I’ve highlighted. 

Tourist Groups say the Greek Islands of Crete, Kos and Rhodes are currently topping the list of preferred destinations for summer holidays and were extremely popular last year too.

“Last year these three islands registered higher levels of activity than Spanish tourist destinations, including Mallorca and it looks like the same thing will happen in summer 2021, if the current health conditions persist,” they said.

Turkey is also positioning itself as a competitive destination for Mallorca this year, particularly the coastal area of Antalya.

UK and German Tour Operators, including Jet2, EasyJet Holidays, Alltours, FTI, Schaunsland and DER Touristik point out that the situation changes from week to week.

But one thing they all agree on is that Mallorca will monopolise summer reservations as soon as the Covid infection levels improve and they stressed the need for Spain’s vaccination campaign to get underway as quickly as possible when vaccines arrive from pharmaceutical companies that have signed contracts with Brussels. 

Which means we should be busting a gut to get the vaccination programme started! 

The National Government has said no favoritism. I get that but with no other industry of any note on the islands surely we should be at the front of the queue? Remembering that we are just 2.5% of the overall Spanish population. 

Spain’s largest industries by annual output are textiles and apparel, food and beverage, metals, chemicals and shipbuilding. Tourism is also a significant contributor to the country’s economy. Spain’s foreign-tourist industry is the second largest in the world.

The industry’s contribution to gross domestic product tumbled to between 4% and 5%, according to estimates from Funcas think-tank analyst Maria Jesus Fernandez, from a 12% share in 2019. I dread to think of the numbers here. 

The other problem could be the “Red list countries” if Spain does get included our regional Government needs to be lobbying now to get us removed. As an island destination none of the Balearics or Canaries for that matter should get included. Remember they were talking about it last year? But nothing was agreed. It seems to have been forgotten and it’s something that should have been agreed when we had the opportunity. 

As everyday passes it’s another day less for businesses to open. 

It’s good to see the numbers going down and things slowly returning to normal. But we all need to keep our vigilance and hope that the vaccines arrive in time for us all to enjoy a summer season. 

Take care everyone and enjoy your Weekend! 

Richie presents the Radio One Mallorca Breakfast show Monday to Friday 07.30-11.00am on 93.8fm in Mallorca and 102fm in Calvià, online at www.radioonemallorca.com on mobile through their free App for IPhone & Android, The Tunein Radio App, iTunes, the Spanish TDT TV service and all smart speakers. If you can’t hear him on the radio then you’ll find him working at Pirates Adventure the islands number one night out and every now and again he may make an understudy appearance! 

Follow him on Twitter @DadTaxi1 & Instagram @dad.taxi or feel free to email him at rprior@globobalear.com 

The Return Of Youth Football

There’s been a lot of things I’ve missed during this pandemic but one of the main things has been being able to watch my two sons play football. It’s not just about the football. I enjoy the social side as it’s good for my Spanish and it’s great to get out around the island. Since the lockdown they’ve been able to train but only my eldest Son has been able to play competitive games. However before Christmas his games were cancelled too. Both have carried on training but there’s only so much of that you can do. This week I was really pleased to see that it looks like both of them will be able to start playing matches at the beginning of March. How they are going to play the matches remains to be seen but it’s some good news at a time when you’re scratching around trying to find some. 

Today sees one of the biggest games of the season for Real Mallorca, when they host Espanyol. It’s first against second, with Mallorca currently 5 points clear at the top. Earlier in the season they played out a 0-0 draw and I imagine that Mallorca would take that today. Naturally a win would be even better but it’s important not to lose to your rivals particularly as in Spain if you finish level on points it’s your record against that team that counts first. It’s also the return of Vincente Moreno to Mallorca after he decided to leave at the end of last season. It’s a shame that the fans aren’t allowed in today as I’m sure the reception would have been interesting. Mallorca come into the game on the back of a 3 game unbeaten run but Espanyol are struggling a little. Since the Christmas break they’ve only won once, drawing one and losing three. Worrying form, so you’d think Moreno wouldn’t want to lose today either. Remember they went through four coaches last season, lose this one and he could be under pressure. Mallorca would go eight points clear with a win and that could be the tipping point for the trigger happy Espanyol owners. Kick-off today is 14.00. 

Just when you think Atlético Baleares have turned the corner they then lose another game. It’s been the story of their season. Last weekend they beat Real Madrid Castilla 2-1 after coming back from a goal down. On Wednesday they played Dux Internacional de Madrid and lost 2-0. Coach Jordi Roger said “we played our worst game in what was a really important match.” There are 5 games to go and to stand a chance of commencing to the next stages, I think they’ll need to win all five. 

Better news for UD Poblense who won away against Getafe B last weekend. It’s only their second win of the season and interestingly they’ve both been away. Their goal is to stay in this league which they are doing right now. 

UD Ibiza after losing at home last week could only draw 1-1 away against Atzeneta UE. But they maintain an 8 point lead at the top. Valencia Mestalla are their opponents at home today. 

Peña Deportiva had a great result last week beating Hercules 2-1. They play La Nucia today and like Poblense their goal is to stay in the league. 

In Tercera Group A, Andratx are 6 points clear of Ibiza Pitiusas with both teams winning last weekend. No game for Manacor so they’re a further 3 points back with a game in hand. 

In Group B, Platges de Calvia still lead the way, 5 points clear with 2 games in hand. It’s very tight below them with just 3 points separating Mallorca B, Santanyi, Formentera and PE Sant Jordi. 

In Division Honor bottom of the table Atlético Villacarlos from Menorca finally got their first win of the season beating San Francisco 1-0 on Wednesday. With four games to go Espanyol still lead by 5 points from Barcelona. 

Take care everyone. 

Richie presents the Radio One Mallorca Breakfast show Monday to Friday 07.30-11.00am on 93.8fm in Mallorca and 102fm in Calvià, online at www.radioonemallorca.com on mobile through their free App for IPhone & Android, The Tunein Radio App, iTunes, the Spanish TDT TV service and all smart speakers. If you can’t hear him on the radio then you’ll find him working at Pirates Adventure the islands number one night out and every now and again he may make an understudy appearance! 

Follow him on Twitter @DadTaxi1 & Instagram @dad.taxi or feel free to email him at rprior@globobalear.com 

Tom Brady The G.O.A.T.

I’ve been meaning to write this for a few weeks now. It just so happens that events in the past week have enabled me to put all this together.

I’m taking a break from island politics and looking at what has to be one the greatest sporting stories of all time. Mallorca does get a mention and so does the Premier League but that will come later.

Years ago I was in Florida and decided to buy a winter jacket. I settled on one that featured the skull and crossbones, as The Pirates Adventure Show here in Mallorca has been pretty much my whole life it was a good fit. So in reality I didn’t buy it for its American football team it was featuring it was the Pirates image that I was drawn to. Now I knew that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were an American Football team and every now and again I’d look out for their results. They won the SuperBowl in 2002 but since then hadn’t been able to hit those heights again. I was in Lidl the other week and a lady came up to me and said “great jacket are you from Tampa?” She explained she was and was very exited about how well they were doing. 

Two years before the Buccaneers first SuperBowl win, a 23yr old by the name of Tom Brady had started his rookie season with the New England Patriots. A year later in 2001 he had led them to his first SuperBowl win over the St Louis Rams 20-17. 

In 2004, the New England Patriots beat the Carolina Panthers 32-29. The Panther’s were making their Super Bowl debut, while the Patriots were seeking their second Super Bowl title in three years, thanks to Brady.

In 2005, in a close scoring game, the Patriots beat the Philadelphia Eagles 24-21, making this the third Super Bowl win for the Patriots in four years.

In 2015, Brady won Most Valuable Player (MVP), after defeating the Seattle Seahawks, 28-24. This was the Patriots first Super Bowl win in 10 years.

In 2017, the Patriots beat the Atlanta Falcons, 34-28. Brady led an epic comeback in overtime, coming back from a 25 point deficit.  

In 2019, the Patriots defeated the Los Angeles Rams in the lowest scoring game in Super Bowl history, 13-3. This was Brady’s sixth win with the Patriots.

It was after this win that he decided to quit the Patriots because they weren’t prepared to offer him a long term contract and it was felt that despite being SuperBowl winners, they were a team in decline. Another contributing factor was the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were prepared to pay him $50 million over two years! The Buccaneers were a pretty good team they just needed someone to gel them together. They had Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, O.J. Howard and Cameron Brate. They would also add two of Brady’s friends, Rob Gronkowski and Antonio Brown. It was clear the Buccaneers were willing to build aggressively around Brady with players he wanted. That group of pass-catchers was an absurd mix of talent. Meanwhile, in New England, the offense had receivers Julian Edelman, Damiere Byrd, N’Keal Harry and Jakobi Meyers, with rookie tight ends (Devin Asiasi, Dalton Keene). It was essentially the same group that couldn’t support Brady in 2019 when he had one of the worst statistical seasons of his career. So the Buccaneers were a good fit. But could he turn the “good fit” into winners?

Well this was Tom Brady, arguably the greatest Quarterback of all time. I say arguably as this opinion is split as fans of other teams will tell you their man was better. San Francisco will say Joe Montana, Miami will say Dan Marino, Denver will say John Elway and Indianapolis will say Peyton Manning. But the truth is he’s won more SuperBowl rings than any other player in any other position. You probably know by now that Brady did turn the Buccaneers into SuperBowl winners, when last Sunday he helped them beat the holders the Kansas City Chiefs. It was billed as a contest between the wise old head of Brady against the young pretender in Patrick Mahomes. In fact it was a no contest as the Buccaneers won 31-9  and meant that in my opinion, if he wasn’t already, Tom Brady has become the G.O.A.T.

The subject of ownership has come up this week too with the Buccaneers owned by the Glazer family. Does that name ring any bells for you? Yes they are the owners of the English Premier League team Manchester United. A family that is not liked too much by the Red Devils fans and that has been shown in the past by the Buccaneers fans too. It made me think of how many Premier League teams now have American influence. It might surprise you to know that it’s Ten! 

Arsenal: Kroenke Sports & Entertainment 

Aston Villa: Wesley Edens, Fortress Investment Group

Burnley: ALK Capital 

Chelsea: Chairman is Bruce Buck, an American lawyer. 

Crystal Palace: Joshua Harris & David Blitzer Tag Worldwide Investment 

Fulham: Shahid Khan, Flex-N-Gate Corp

Leeds Utd: York Family, 49ers Enterprises 

Liverpool: Fenway Sports Group

Manchester Utd: The Glazer Family

West Ham: Albert Smith, GSO Capital Partners

Worth noting that Tottenham have done a deal with the National Football League(NFL) to host two American Football games a year at their brand new stadium when restrictions allow. It has also been said that if a franchise was to be set up in the UK then the Spurs ground would be the natural choice. Which pushes the American influence to Eleven. 

Now I’m not sure if you’re aware that promotion and relegation doesn’t exist in American sport. I’m sure this would be something that would appeal to the American owners and influencers in the Premier League. So could that actually happen in the future? Well at the moment no, in order for anything to change the Premier League currently requires the consent of 14 of its 20 clubs to approve decisions large and small but don’t be surprised if this rears its ugly head in the future. 

Remember “Project Big Picture?” It would see teams in the EFL – ie the leagues below the Premier League, given £250m ($325m) to share between themselves, plus 25% of revenue from future TV deals that the Premier League secures. In exchange, the footballing calendar would be trimmed to suit the top Premier League clubs – with the number of Premier League teams cut to 18, and the EFL Cup (currently the Carabao Cup) and Community Shield being abolished. And who were the main drivers of this? Liverpool and Manchester United, who as you’ve seen above are influenced heavily by Americans. 

Now I don’t want this to look like I’m against American ownership as I’ve seen here in Mallorca the turn around in Real Mallorca’s fortunes since they were taken over by their own group. Robert Sarver, Andy Kohlberg and Steve Nash have done an amazing job with Mallorca over the last few years and I hope for many years to come. 

It’s an observation and one I will be keeping an eye on in the cutthroat world of football especially after the pandemic. 

Take care everyone and enjoy your Valentines weekend! 

Richie presents the Radio One Mallorca Breakfast show Monday to Friday 07.30-11.00am on 93.8fm in Mallorca and 102fm in Calvià, online at www.radioonemallorca.com on mobile through their free App for IPhone & Android, The Tunein Radio App, iTunes, the Spanish TDT TV service and all smart speakers. If you can’t hear him on the radio then you’ll find him working at Pirates Adventure the islands number one night out and every now and again he may make an understudy appearance! 

Follow him on Twitter @DadTaxi1 & Instagram @dad.taxi or feel free to email him at rprior@globobalear.com 

A Good Window For Mallorca

The transfer window closed last Monday with Real Mallorca adding three new signings. 

Alvaro Giménez a centre forward joined on loan from Cadiz. The 29-year-old progressed from the Mallorca academy to the first team in a two-year spell at the club in 2011, before going onto represent Elche CF, AD Alcorcón, UD Almería, Birmingham City and his parent club. Giménez was also the Segunda División’s top goalscorer two seasons ago having found the back of the net 20 times at UD Almería.

Victor Mollejo a winger joined on loan from Atlético Madrid. The 20 year old ended his loan spell at Getafe CF early and has previous Segunda División experience at Deportivo de la Coruña where he made 36 appearances and scored six times. He is also a youth international for his native Spain and recently won the Under-20s European Championships. 

Koke Vegas a goalkeeper joined on loan from Levante. The 25 year old joins to add back up to Manolo Reina and Miquel Parera. 

The most interesting of the three is Giménez, if he can recapture the goal scoring form of two years ago in the same division he could fire Mallorca to promotion.

Last weekend after defeating Girona, Mallorca watched to see what their promotion rivals could do. It was looking pretty routine at half time for second placed Espanyol, cruising to a 2-0 lead. But an amazing second half comeback from Rayo Vallecano saw them run out 2-3 winners. Almeria hit two late goals to defeat lowly Castellón and join Espanyol in second place. So Mallorca finished the Weekend three points clear at the top. Friday night they went away to 17th placed Albacete a team you would have thought they could beat. However what their position didn’t show was that they hadn’t lost since December 21st, having won four and drawn one. They were in fact the team with the best form in January. 

Mallorca included all three transfer window signings in their squad but not in the starting eleven. They were helped by a sending off for Albacete in the first half but they were struggling to break them down. A triple substitution in the 55th minute sparked them into life, resulting in Ndiaye scoring for the third match in a row. They looked like they had thrown it away in the 88th minute when Albacete were awarded a penalty but with luck on their side it was missed. The coach Luis Garcia Plaza said, “It’s a vital victory – very important – but today we weren’t as sharp as other games. We struggled with that last pass, that last situation.” He added “We’re a team that goes out to win in any field and in any situation, the team’s ambition is the word that defines it the most – even on days when we are not so good. What we’re missing from this great season is our fans in the stadium.” I second that and it will be hugely disappointing if we’re not allowed in before the end of the season. At that point they were six points clear at the top with Espanyol and Almeria still to play. Almeria drew 1-1 last night with Fuenlabrada to move into second place. Espanyol don’t play until Monday against Lugo. That’s three victories in a row now for Mallorca and their blip seems to be over. The next two games could go a long way to decide whether they’ll gain automatic promotion or not. Espanyol next weekend and Almeria the week after. 

Atlético Baleares started against Atlético Madrid on the back of two successive wins and looking back in form. However an early goal from Madrid put them on the back foot and they didn’t really recover from it losing 1-0. They are at home to mid table Real Madrid Castilla managed by their former legend Raul and need to get a win. 

UD Poblense have worryingly gone to the bottom of the league with a 0-1 reverse against Las Rozas. They’ve only won one game so far and have the highest amount of draws with six. Perhaps the stat which defines the reason they are bottom is that they’ve conceded the most goals. This weekend they are away at Getafe B.

Here’s something I’ve not written this season, UD Ibiza have lost a league game. On the one hand it was surprisingly at home but on the other it was against the team in second place Alcoyano, who defeated Real Madrid in the Copa del Rey. The coach Juan Carlos Carcedo said “The team was on a sustained run of hugely impressive results and we  know just how difficult it was to achieve that. Now, we will regroup and go again with the same focus and ambition as always”. Today they play mid table Atzeneta UE away. 

Peña Deportiva disappointingly drew 0-0 at bottom of the table Atlético Levante UD. It was a chance for them to add to their points tally but like the rest of the season they couldn’t score. That’s just three goals in 12 games and that might well be their downfall. They’re at home to third placed Hercules today. 

In Tercera division group A, After closing the gap to Andratx both Manacor and Ibiza Pitiusas let it slip again. Manacor lost at home to Constancia and Ibiza could only draw with Soller. Andratx have won their last two to move nine points clear and although the chasing teams have games in hand they can’t keep throwing away opportunities. 

In Tercera division group B, Platges de Calvia are still dominating. They are five points clear of Real Mallorca B with two games in hand. 

In Division Honor top of the table Espanyol finally lost their first game losing 2-0 at Girona. Penya Arrabal thrashed Atlético Villacarlos 7-1, San Francisco got a hard fought 1-0 win over UD Cornella and Real Mallorca play CF Damm today. 

Youth football are still training and let’s see what the authorities do with the restrictions next week. 

Take care everyone. 

Richie presents the Radio One Mallorca Breakfast show Monday to Friday 07.30-11.00am on 93.8fm in Mallorca and 102fm in Calvià, online at www.radioonemallorca.com on mobile through their free App for IPhone & Android, The Tunein Radio App, iTunes, the Spanish TDT TV service and all smart speakers. If you can’t hear him on the radio then you’ll find him working at Pirates Adventure the islands number one night out and every now and again he may make an understudy appearance! 

Follow him on Twitter @DadTaxi1 & Instagram @dad.taxi or feel free to email him at rprior@globobalear.com 

Forget Easter, Concentrate on Summer

I’m getting fed up with the constant sound bytes from Government ministers here about what they think will be happening this summer. Without an actual plan on how it is actually going to happen. Does anyone actually read them and believe them? Last week I commented on the Prime Minister saying the tourist season wouldn’t start until the end of the summer and the tourism minister saying it would be spring but with no specific date. Then our own President saying it would be June. Fast forward to this past week and the Tourism Minister was at it again saying national tourism could restart at Easter as long as health security conditions are met. What those conditions were she didn’t know but a few days later the health minister said it would only happen if cases were at a 14-day cumulative incidence of no more than 150 cases per 100,000. He also added that he didn’t know when Easter was! So you’ve got a tourism minister who says we could open by Easter but didn’t know what numbers were needed in order to do so and a health minister who quotes the numbers needed but didn’t know when Easter was! Is it me? Do these people communicate with each other before they speak? 

I don’t believe we should be concentrating on an Easter opening, all our thoughts and plans should be on a summer opening. Also an Easter opening to national tourism only? Haven’t we learnt anything? It took until December 20th for the Balearic Islands to make everyone arriving from the mainland to come with a negative test. The rise in the numbers through November, December and January were undoubtedly people travelling in and out from the mainland without any checks. Even though we have the checks in place I still wouldn’t risk it. Easter falls early April(Good Friday is April 2nd) so you’ll have a busy 4 or 5 days and then a complete lull for the rest of the month. My view would be to forget that and push out the vaccine as quickly as possible to be ready for May if possible but at the latest June. Whilst not ideal I think most businesses would try and make a go of the Summer if that was the case. 

We have a big enough resident population to get businesses moving. There was a report out this week that of the Agroturismo hotels that are currently open, their occupancy is 80% from residents only. Ask anyone right now what they’d do once the restrictions are relaxed. My guess is visit their favourite restaurants, bars and cafes that they’ve not been to in ages. 

Obviously there needs to be a plan to get the bars cafes and restaurants opening on a staggered basis like before. They’ve had so many false dawns and knock backs, offer them tax and social security breaks and encourage them to get staff off of the ERTE(furlough) and Paro(Unemployment benefit). That starts the system moving again. Then start encouraging people to start going out again. Masks on and socially distancing of course. But why not offer a scheme like the UK’s eat out to help out, where a discount was offered to people eating out Monday to Wednesday’s. Each customer got a 50% discount on food or non-alcoholic drinks to eat or drink in (up to a maximum of £10 discount per diner). The business gave them the discount and reclaimed the money back from the Government. Very much like the voucher system they have in Calvia from the Town Hall. I’ve spoken to quite a few businesses who have taken part in that and it seems to have worked. I know we have used it at the barbers, hairdressers, massage and a sports shop to name a few. It’s encouraged people to shop locally. 

The difference this time is that the vaccine is on the horizon, albeit as seen through a pair of binoculars right now but it exists. I’m not sure why the Government has said the vaccinations will only be carried out by the public health and not the private? Surely it’s better to get it out there as quick as possible? I’m not sure the public health system will be able to cope? I’d heard that the army might be brought in like in the UK, which would be a good thing. Vox party leader Jorge Campos has said that if the Balearic Government can’t get the vaccine quick enough from the mainland government then they should go out and buy it themselves. He said that the Pfizer vaccine costs 17€ per unit. Therefore to vaccine the whole of the Balearic population that are on the padrón, which is currently 1, 149,460 people, would cost 19,540,820€. There are 35,156 currently on the ERTE(furlough) in the Balearics plus 109,900 on Paro(unemployment benefit), so just over 145,000 currently out of work.

If the Government are paying 500€ a month which I know can be less or can be more but just makes the maths easier for me! That’s 72,528,000€ cost every month to the Government. Now I’m no economist but shouldn’t we be going out and looking at all possibilities of vaccines? It’s the only way we are going to have a summer season here on the island. 

On a lighter note this week I went and had a full body wax! Not something you do every day but this was left over from the Radiothon as a challenge for me. Four guys put up 175€ for our charities for me to do it so I had to keep my promise. A big thanks to Denise and all her staff at Denise Beauty Salon in Portals Village who looked after me. I can’t describe the pain!

Take care everyone and enjoy your weekend! 

Richie presents the Radio One Mallorca Breakfast show Monday to Friday 07.30-11.00am on 93.8fm in Mallorca and 102fm in Calvià, online at www.radioonemallorca.com on mobile through their free App for IPhone & Android, The Tunein Radio App, iTunes, the Spanish TDT TV service and all smart speakers. If you can’t hear him on the radio then you’ll find him working at Pirates Adventure the islands number one night out and every now and again he may make an understudy appearance! 

Follow him on Twitter @DadTaxi1 & Instagram @dad.taxi or feel free to email him at rprior@globobalear.com 

Real Mallorca Back In The Groove

Last weeks results in La Liga Smartbank couldn’t have gone much better for Real Mallorca, they were the only team in the top 6 to win a game. The leaders Espanyol lost at Girona, Mallorca beat fourth placed Rayo Vallecano. Third placed Almeria were the only team to pick up a point with a home draw against lowly Sabadell. Fifth placed Sporting Gijón lost at Castellon and sixth placed Leganés lost against Las Palmas.

It got even better last night against Girona when a last minute Ndiaye goal gave them a 1-0 victory. That takes them 3 points clear at the top, with Espanyol still to play today. Almeria moved level on points with Espanyol with a 3-1 victory against Castellón. 

Mallorca are now top on 48 points, with Espanyol and Almeria on 45 points. Then there’s a gap to Rayo on 37 points, Sporting on 36 points and Leganés on 34 points, who all still have to play this weekend. Remembering that the top two go up automatically to La Liga, with the next four in the play-offs for the remaining place. 

Mallorca are still looking to recruit a striker in the transfer window. Alvaro Giménez at Cadiz and Mamadou Sylla at Girona are two names that have been mentioned. So let’s see if anyone does come in.

Atlético Baleares finally got back to winning ways this week with back to back wins against Rayo Majadahonda and Getafe B. A couple of great results to ease the pressure on the coach Jordi Roger. They are now in the play-off places so it’s important to continue this form against Atlético Madrid B who are managed by the former Liverpool, Chelsea and Atlético legend Fernando Torres. Goalkeeper Juan Carlos Sanchez who joined the club this year has fallen out with the coach and Sporting Director and has now left the club. On the website the club say they’ve reached an agreement to cancel his contract. However Juan Carlos commented that after being dropped after the 2-3 loss to Poblense the club have not kept their promises so he is leaving. Xavi Ginard has played in the last two games and the club have just signed Rene Roman as a back up keeper from Dinamo Bucharest. 

UD Poblense lost 1-0 last weekend to top of the table San Sebastián and remain in seventh place of their ten team league. They have a home match today against Las Rozas, who are below them in the league so 3 points will be most welcome. They have signed centre forward Ruben Jurado from fellow Segunda B team Barakaldo. The 34 year old comes with a lot of experience and will hopefully get some much needed goals. 

UD Ibiza maintained their unbeaten start with a 0-1 last minute victory against La Nucia. This weekend they have a home game against the team that defeated Real Madrid in the Copa Del Rey Alcoyano. 

Peña Deportiva managed a 1-1 draw with Valencia Mestalla. An 87th minute equaliser helped them salvage a point. Today they have an away game at bottom of the table Atlético Levante, so a chance of a much needed win. 

Things have got interesting in Tercera. In Group A Ibiza Pitiusas beat top of the table Andratx 3-0 to inflict only their second defeat of the season. Manacor won away at Felanitx leaving Andratx on top with 31 points, Manacor second on 25 points and with a game in hand. Ibiza Pitiusas are third on 23 points but have two games in hand on Andratx. 

In Group B Platges de Calvia still lead the way on 27 points followed by Santanyi on 23 points, having played a game more and Mallorca B in third on 21 points.

In Division Honor, the derby between Penya Arrabal and San Francisco ended in a win for Penya 1-0. Real Mallorca got a creditable 0-0 draw against top of the table Espanyol. 

Still no other youth football at the moment with the current restrictions. 

Take care everyone. 

Richie presents the Radio One Mallorca Breakfast show Monday to Friday 07.30-11.00am on 93.8fm in Mallorca and 102fm in Calvià, online at www.radioonemallorca.com on mobile through their free App for IPhone & Android, The Tunein Radio App, iTunes, the Spanish TDT TV service and all smart speakers. If you can’t hear him on the radio then you’ll find him working at Pirates Adventure the islands number one night out and every now and again he may make an understudy appearance! 

Follow him on Twitter @DadTaxi1 & Instagram @dad.taxi or feel free to email him at rprior@globobalear.com 

It’s All About The Spin Whilst The Substance Reveals Another Story

Massive thanks to everyone who has viewed and shared my column and blog from last week. It’s been seen in Spain, Uk, USA, Ireland, Czech Republic, Poland, Bulgaria, Netherlands, Pakistán, Italy, Switzerland, Philippines, Mexico, Austria, Australia, Germany, Malta, Qatar, Estonia, Belgium, Serbia, Canada, Andorra, New Zealand & Norway, UAE, Hong Kong, Slovakia, Thailand, Portugal, Hungary and Egypt, 

I said you couldn’t make it up but sometimes I think this Government are. Last week the President Pedro Sanchez said he couldn’t see the tourist industry returning before the end of the summer season. That was hastily followed by the Tourism Minister Reyes Maroto saying that actually the country would be open by the Spring. Well spring is from March 20th to June the 21st, so any chance of a more accurate date Minister? A name of a month will do. 

Then came our own Baleares President Francina Armengol or Armageddon as I’m told she’s now known. She actually did give us that month when she said that “normal life” could return to the Balearics by June as long as the mass vaccination programme is successful. However this was followed by the front page headline in the Spanish newspaper Ultima Hora the following day which read “The Government have slowed down the vaccinations because there aren’t enough doses! All this within a space of a week 

I’m sorry to keep banging on about it but these people are running our lives. Actually I’ll change that running to ruining because that’s how a lot of people feel right now. I’ll give them last Summer, although mistakes were made, everyone was taken by surprise at the severity of the pandemic. But since we knew that the last Summer season wasn’t going to happen the plan should have been put in place to make sure that summer 2021 was a starter. Unfortunately we’ve stumbled from one mistake to another and in my opinion they should have stopped arrivals from the beginning of December. That would have meant stopping the beginning of December holidays, Christmas, New Year and Three Kings. Difficult and very unpopular decisions I know but the rise in numbers weren’t down to the bars, restaurants, gyms etc they were down to those celebrations. No Government wants to ban things people enjoy especially in a lockdown but that decision should have been made. 

Look at New Zealand, their Prime Minister Jacinda Arden won immense praise last year for her leadership. She instituted a mandatory quarantine for all travellers on March 15th, when the nation had recorded just 6 cases. The alert level has just been lowered to 1, and virus measures such as social-distancing are at a minimum as a result, in a country that has only had 25 fatalities since the start of the pandemic, and just 2,246 positive cases. Compare that to the Balearics as a whole that has had just over 51,000 cases and 579 deaths. Remembering also that their population is 4 times the size of ours. And yes I realise that land mass and population density are different but it shows what can be achieved on islands with a clear plan. 

If we were in that position now we would be gearing up for the summer and people would not be in such a desperate situation. I’m not sure the authorities realise the problem out there. 

I’ve detected since we finished the Christmas celebrations and restrictions have become tighter that there is a change in the attitude of the authorities to start clawing back the money it’s losing. If I look for an anology, It’s a bit of a Robin Hood attitude, robbing the rich(and not so rich)to pay the poor. A few people I know have been subject to work inspections the like of which they’ve never had before. Fines have been increased. I know to my cost as my Wife was stopped by an unmarked Police car after the Genova tunnel this week for not having her lights on. Her side lights were on but not the main ones. The fine? 200 euros! 

The “help” of 1500€ by the Government to the bars and restaurants that were made to close actually isn’t all it seems. If you owe any tax or social security right now they say you’re not entitled to it. What business that either hasn’t opened for 10 months or has but at a reduced capacity doesn’t owe some money to the tax man? One business owner was actually told you have to pay us before your employees. No negotiation. It’s wrong and as always it’s all about the spin while the substance reveals another story. 

I’ll leave you with a Feelgood story this week. Despite the desperation of some right now there are some good things happening with the help of good people. I was alerted by the charity SOS Calvia to a single Spanish lady with a child who was struggling to fix her washing machine. There were lots of offers of help from money donations to offers of a second hand one. A guy called Kevin Pellowe offered to go round and fix the machine so I arranged for him to go on Saturday morning. He went and told me it was unfixable. I contacted a guy called Damo who lived in Son Dureta who had offered for free a second hand one and Kevin agreed to pick it up and it was fitted in on Sunday. All this was done free of charge and I just want to say a massive thanks to both the guys who have stepped up at a time of need. Human kindness at its best.

Take care everyone and enjoy your weekend! 

Richie presents the Radio One Mallorca Breakfast show Monday to Friday 07.30-11.00am on 93.8fm in Mallorca and 102fm in Calvià, online at www.radioonemallorca.com on mobile through their free App for IPhone & Android, The Tunein Radio App, iTunes, the Spanish TDT TV service and all smart speakers. If you can’t hear him on the radio then you’ll find him working at Pirates Adventure the islands number one night out and every now and again he may make an understudy appearance! 

Follow him on Twitter @DadTaxi1 & Instagram @dad.taxi or feel free to email him at rprior@globobalear.com