Chronology of Albiol's big day

Raul Albiol presented before a crowd 10,000 strong

Albiol was born in a small town in Valencia. Rafa Benitez gave him the chance to debut at the age of 18. Valencia loaned Albiol to Getafe the following season in order for the player to gain experience in Spain’s top flight. He suffered a serious car accident that same year and his spleen was removed, forcing him to remain inactive for two months. But Albiol made a full recovery and returned to football. He is now an unquestionable starter for La Roja. His list of accolades includes one La Liga, one Copa del Rey, one UEFA Cup and one European Championship. Now Raul Albiol begins a new chapter of his life. Beginning at 21:00 CET when he is officially unveiled in the Santiago Bernabeu, the tall, fast and strong centre back will be new player of Real Madrid. A long day awaits. A magical day is in store.
After landing at Terminal 2 of Barajas International Airport from his native Valencia, Albiol expressed how happy he was to be in Madrid and how excited he is to become a Madridista. The player, whoe was joined by his father, wife, brothers and baby daughter, was driven to the Mirasierra Suites Hotel to get a good night's rest before his big day.

Raul Albiol passes his mandatory physical this morning prior to being unveiled at 21:00 CET tonight at the Santiago Bernabeu. The player was put through sevaral tests including a biomechanics exam at Sanitas La Moraleja Hospital. According to the Chief of Real Madrid's Medical Services, "Raul is in phenomenal shape. All the results were satisfactory. He is perfectly fit for whatever the coaching staff asks of him. He can begin preseason training with absolute normality."

After passing his medical earlier in the day, he went to the Bernabeu and was received by Director General and Presidential Aide Jorge Valdano. Sporting Director Miguel Pardeza and Director of Institutional Relations Emilio ButragueƱo also welcomed the footballer. Albiol toured the facility and took time out of his hectic schedule to meet several club employees.

Despite waking up early for his medical and with a long day ahead, he has yet to wipe the smile off his face. During his visit to the Santiago Bernabeu, Albiol didn't miss out on the chance to overlook the pitch from the Presidential Balcony and greet club employees. Even during one of the most intense days of his life, he managed to fit in a visit to, where he took particular interest in how the website is produced and all the news being written about him on his special day.

After and interview with Realmadrid TV and a walk around the Santiago Bernabeu, Raul Albiol sat down for lunch with Jorge Valdano, Miguel Pardeza and his agent, Manuel Garcia Quilon. Following lunch, the centre back will be taken back to Mirasierra Suites Hotel to rest before heading back to the stadium at approximately 19:30 for the start of his presentation rituals.

Shortly before 20:00, Albiol returned to the Bernabeu to sign his contract and be officially unveiled as a new member of Real Madrid.

Raul Albiol is officially a Real Madrid player. The international defender signed a five-year contract alongside president Florentino Perez. The event took place in the Board Room of the Santiago Bernabeu minutes prior to the player’s official presentation on the turf of the Madridista stadium. Also on hand were President of Honor, Alfredo di Stefano, Jorge Valdano, Miguel Pardeza and several Board members.

Before entering, Raul commented on the four previous times he had entered the visitors' dressing room. "With Quique, Koeman and twice with Unai. Once for La Liga and the other for the Super Cup," said Albiol. He never made it while playing for Getafe "because I joined the team for the second half of the season and they had already played here."

The Santiago Bernabeu hosted its third presentation of the season following that of Manuel Pellegrini and Kaka. This time it was Raul Albiol's turn. Filled with emotion and taking in the momentous occasion, Albiol made his way through the tunnel and appeared before his new fan base. His speech was cut off several times by raucous fans who had gathered for the event. "I will do everything I can to return the confidence that has been placed in me," were the first words out of the new Madridista's mouth.

Raul Albiol was clearly delighted about his signing during his first press conference as a Real Madrid player, during which he said that playing for the Club is a dream come true.


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