Spanish soccer giant Real Madrid joined the outpouring of solidarity with archrival FC Barcelona Thursday following a suspected terrorist attack that killed at least 13 people and injured 50 in Las Ramblas, a lively tourist-filled promenade in Barcelona’s city center.
"Real Madrid express their deepest dismay at the attack suffered in the city of Barcelona and their solidarity with the victims and their families and friends, at the same time as wishing a speedy recovery to those injured."
Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo tweeted, in Portuguese: “Dismayed by the news arriving from Barcelona. Full support and solidarity with the family and friends of the victims.”
Barcelona is scheduled to open its 2017-18 season at home on Sunday against Betis.
Lionel Messi, Barcelona’s most famous player, responded to the attack on Instagram: “I want to send my condolences and all my support to the families and friends of the victims of this terrible attack in our beloved Barcelona, as well as totally rejecting any act of violence.
“We're not going to give up, there are more of us who want to live in a world of peace, without hate and where respect and tolerance form the basis of our coexistence.”
Three weeks ago, FC Barcelona, Real Madrid and 66,000 fans were at Hard Rock Stadium for “El Clasico Miami,” a summer exhibition game between teams who had only played each other away from Spain only once in their long, storied rivalry. Barcelona won the Miami game, 3-2.
At the time, Barca’s biggest concern was whether Brazilian star Neymar would stay with their team or bolt to Paris Saint-Germain. He wound up leaving for a record-transfer fee. Thursday, Neymar’s departure hardly seemed like a tragedy anymore in wake of the terror attack.
“Deeply saddened by the attack on our city,” FC Barcelona wrote on Twitter. “All our thoughts are with the victims, their families and with the people of Barcelona.”
Espanyol, the city's other Primera Division club, wrote: "The most beautiful city in the world, our city. We suffer with you and with all Barcelonians."