Ibiza was an eye opener even to me, a career substance abuser!
My time in the party capital of the universe got off to a roaring start. 2 months in and we’d gone 9 games unbeaten, winning 7 of those and letting the rest of the league know Scott Ryker’s here to stay.
And during that time, I’d hardly been on the booze or the gear. Don’t get me wrong, my first few nights here were spent getting absolutely spangled and the number of places where people were partying, the booze was flowing and powder everywhere was eye opening even to me, a career substance abuser! Along with the various vices and alcohol were plenty of women willing to do most things, if the price was right
I’d been away from Canada just over 3 months, 12 weeks and 3 days to be exact and not once had I thought about the toaster, until 1 day lo and fucking behold the phone rang, at the most inconvenient of times nonetheless.
I was having a chat with forward Gianluca Simeone. You’ll probably recognise his surname as the same as Diego, legend of Atletico Madrid and all round master of football shit housery. Anyway it turns out young Gianluca, 5 goals in 9 games at that time, is Diego’s son. So it was an absolute honor to me that Diego had come to Barcelona to see us salvage a 1 all draw with Espanyol’s B team in the lunch time kick off, in a game that Diego scored the equaliser right on full time
As I was a bit star struck by the mere presence of Diego, my concentration was broken by the dull ringing of my battered up phone. An unknown number. I answered, and as soon as the voice started speaking, I regretted it
Incoherent at best was the rambling and dulcet tones I instantly knew as the toasters voice, I made out something along the lines of she was sorry for how things have turned out and that it (not she any more) was coming to Spain to see me to work things out, or something to that extent. I quickly hung up praying to whatever gods are out there that if I never heard from the toaster again it would still be too soon.
By the time my call with the kitchen appliance had ended, so had Luca’s with his dad and both had left the stadium. I decided to call it a day once we’d arrived back later that night in Ibiza and took in more of the party and dope spots on the island. A few hours, maybe more spent in one place had me talking to some locals, and when they found out what my job was they were keen to see me stay with them. I asked one of the guys what his job was, his reply was ‘I’m just your average illegal type of fella, beer drinking cocaine sniffing street dweller’. I said wow you’re a poet, do you know it? He laughed and pulled out a bag of Bolivian baking soda which carried us through to the early hours of Monday morning.
After seeing through that day as best as I could, I arrived to training on Tuesday morning still feeling rough, but in good spirits due to our form. I had a chat with Kevin, my assistant and we spoke about how things were going. Those 7 wins really steadied the ship in my mind, as I genuinely thought I’d stuff it and we’d struggle early on. I aren’t one to blow my trumpet, and if I would if I could, but I take full credit for those wins. Simeone and Antonio up top taking exceptionally well to my tactical direction. But for every good there’s usually a bad, and my first 3 months in Ibiza were no different
Antonio was not just a goal scorer but he held the ball up well, was quick on his feet for a big lad and could pass as well as our midfielders, so for him to get injured was a big blow.
I didn’t risk it with the injections, so he just sat with the physio until he was match fit. Luckily Rodrigo was ready to go and slotted in perfectly, scoring twice in 4 starts, as well as getting 2 assists for Simeone.
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