Memo to Bleacher Report: Here’s a Thought… Actually Get a Soccer Writer Who Knows Spanish

Aug 27, 2013
10:23 pm

Let’s just say this: we love Bleacher Report, so think of the following post as friendly advice from one page to another. Earlier today, columnist Ryan Bailey wrote a piece about how Spanish phrases soccer star Gareth Bale would need to learn now that he is heading to Real Madrid.


Let’s just say this: good idea, bad execution. And do you want to know why? Because the guy who wrote it was lazy. Bailey did warn us when he said, “Disclaimer: I do not speak Spanish at all, so these phrases are almost certainly woefully innacurate!” (bad English spelling at all—ironic).

But that was just a copout, because in the end, the column read like the typical UK guy who was poking cheeky good fun at the “foreign” country (and language) that is Spanish.

First of all, you would think Bailey would have asked an actual Spanish editor to check his Spanish: “¿Cómo puedo obtener a Pozuelo de Alarcón?” for “How Do I Get to Pozuelo De Alarcon?” Or what about, “¿Por qué se la multitud silbaba tanto?” for “Why Are the Crowd Whistling so Much?” Then there is, “No gracias, no necesitan tratamiento” for “”No Thank You, I Do Not Need Treatment.” And so on.

Ok, we will give Bailey props for “¿Dónde compra Cristiano Ronaldo su ropa?” (“Where Does Cristiano Ronaldo Buy His Clothes?”), but that’s not the point. This is the point: imagine if Bleacher Report actually assigned this goofy column to a sportswriter who actually spoke Spanish or actually could express the cultural nuances of a Welshman heading to Madrid. Instead, because Bleacher Report probably thinks that no one like that exists in the world, we get a guy who comes across as more patronizing than funny.

Was it that difficult for Bailey and Bleacher Report to actually check if the Spanishg was accurate and authentic? Did they really just use Google Translate? Guess so.

Yo, Bleacher Report, the bilingual bicultural sports bloggers who lover futbol are out there. Why don’t you reach out to them instead of just giving assignments to people that have no clue?