Legendary winger Luis Figo has compared the supporters of both Real Madrid and Barcelona, insisting that he preferred to play at the Camp Nou.
Figo became a hugely controversial figure in Spanish football when he made a £54m move from Barcelona to Real in 2000, leading to many Barcelona fans turning against Figo for the remainder of his career.
However, in an interview with XL Semanal, Figo insisted that Barcelona fans are much more supportive than Real fans.
He said: “I experienced them at different times. In Barcelona they idolise players and it is wonderful to play in such an environment. They do not screw you so much if things do not go well.
“Madrid has a great love of being the best and they set the bar very high.”
This season, many Real fans have expressed their frustrations towards their team. Los Blancos have sacked Julen Lopetegui and Santiago Solari, with Zinedine Zidane returning to lead the side for the remainder of the season.
Real have crashed out of the Copa del Rey and Champions League in spectacular fashion, and they now sit 12 points behind Barcelona in La Liga, in their first season without Cristiano Ronaldo.
Figo admitted that the team was always likely to struggle without Ronaldo, adding: “Ronaldo is irreplaceable. It is logical that the teams need to reinforce themselves when they lose such an important player, but the market is difficult because there are not so many chances of acquiring important players that can serve Madrid.”
Finally, Figo discussed the development of 18-year-old Vinicius Junior, who had been one of Real’s standout performers before suffering a knee injury against Ajax.
He said: “He’s been very important. He has a lot of room to grow, but I think that, at his age, he needs more success in front of goal.”