04 May 2008
The new campaign began on a high after the team's Ninth European Cup celebration at the end of the previous season in a memorable fixture by the most skillful, and reputedly, the best player on the globe, Zidane. The strike was simply a monument to footballing technique and a beautiful sight to catch. Ronaldo was the squad's newcomer. This way, Real Madrid had the two best players in the world. The start was shaky, alternating home wins, where the team was on solid ground, and draws and defeats on the road. This uncertain course hampers the Whites from having a peep at the top spots until deep into the mid-season. Specifically, after the 4-1 win versus Valencia: the Merengues hit second place. The biggest opponent of the year would be Real Sociedad, which were on a high, a roll, and a dream. They had pocketed one point after a goalless draw at the Bernabéu in the tenth matchday.
With both teams vying for the title, the struggle would not be resolved until the last week. On Day 24 of the Primera Liga, Madrid travelled to Vitoria, the Basque capital and ripped Alavés apart by 5-1, stepping up to first position for the first time in the season. They ceased being King of the Mountain after the 33rd matchday following a draw against Recreativo Huelva at the Colombino stadium. A true shocker that sends the Merengue fans into a fit of rage. The title was in the hands of Real Sociedad. The team, however, stay strong and level-headed for the remaining five weeks. Just two games from the very end, a draw against Celta –who finished fourth this season- leaves every supporter feeling dishearted. But it would be precisely the Galicians who would pave the way to final bliss defeating the Basques 3-2 in their home court of Balaídos. Meanwhile, the Madridistas did their job at the Vicente Calderón derby pummeling their red-and-white neoghbours 4-0 with a double brace by Ronaldo and Raúl. The last gameday would be the decider, but Madrid were ahead and depended on themselves to pocket the title. Athletic Bilbao, the other Basque side, wanted to give their neighbours a hand, but that didn't allow Sociedad to snatch first place from Real. The Bilbao Lions neutralised Ronaldo's game opener, but Roberto Carlos, just before halftime, and Ronaldo again, fifteen minutes later, chalked up Madrid's 3 of the night forthe final 3-1 result. La Liga title number 29 made its way to the Real Madrid Museum Trophy Room.
Goalkeepers: Casillas, César & Carlos Sánchez
Defenders: Salgado, Raúl Bravo, Roberto Carlos, Hierro, Helguera, Pavón & Miñambres
Midfielders: Cambiasso, Celades, Conceiçao, Zidane, Figo, Solari, Makelele, McManaman & Guti
Forwards: Portillo, Ronaldo, Morientes, Raúl & Tote
Coach: Vicente del Borque