Real Madrid's latest big signing comes from... Mayo
Real Madrid’s latest star signing comes not from England, Italy or South America, but from the unlikely destination of Ballyhaunis, County Mayo.
That’s right, a town that was once voted as the smelliest in all of Ireland could soon be identified for an entirely different reason altogether, as the town which produced the first ever Irish footballer to play for Real Madrid.
Eight-year old John Joe Patrick Finn – a fine Irish name if we’ve ever heard one – was recently snapped up by Real Madrid’s youth academy after excelling in a trial match where he scored five out of his side’s six goals.
John Joe himself was born and raised in Madrid, but his dad, John, hails from Ballyhaunis, County Mayo and works for the Spanish government.
Honest to a fault, in a recent interview with Red FM, he put John Joe’s ability down to his mother’s French and Cameroonian heritage and connection with Nicolas Anelka and Christian Karembeu, as opposed to any sporting genes he may have inherited from East Mayo.
John confirmed that Real had taken quite an interest in John Joe and even speculated that he could make the first team squad by the time he was 15 or 16 years old.
Unfortunately for us, however, he said that John Joe hasn't yet made up his mind which country he will play for and if the international status quo is the same in ten years as it is now, we look destined to lose John Joe to Spain.
“We think he’s the first Irishman ever to sign for Real,” John is quoted as saying in The Sun.
“John Joe Patrick models himself on Cristiano Ronaldo. He is besotted by him.”
It’s a huge achievement for John Joe and quite the boon for Ballyhaunis, although we would have thought that such huge news would command more attention than it did on ballyhaunischamber.ie recently,where it was overshadowed by the sale of a 15 month old Glebe farm Tyson Bull for €10,000.