After a World Cup campaign that included a catastrophic 5-1 loss to the Netherlands and a staggering 2-0 defeat against Chile, it's understandable that feelings amongst Spanish National Team members would be a bit sore. That said, while raw emotions are to be expected, it seems that Jordi Alba let his mood get the better of him in the wake of Spain's consolation victory against Australia on Monday.
According to multiple reports from a variety of outlets, as Jordi Alba walked through the mixed zone in the the Arena da Baixada where journalists converge to speak with players, Alba confronted journalist Javier Gómez Matallanas, a reporter for the Spanish paper AS. Passing by Matallanas, Alba was reported to have said, "Next time I’ll rip your head off," before confirming his threat by responding to a perplexed Matallanas by saying, "I'm warning you."
That would be shocking in and of itself, but surprisingly, it seems that Alba's sour mood continued well beyond the mixed zone, as Matallanas boarded his flight back to Spain, which coincidentally, he was set to share with a number of players including Alba. Rather than let bygones be bygones, Alba once again confronted Matallanas, calling him a "rat."
While it's not unusual for professional athletes to hold grudges against journalists known to criticize their play, it seems this might be a case of mistaken identiy, with Matallanas quoted as saying, "I've never written or said anything about Jordi Alba; this isn't the best way to end the World Cup."
While it's definitely not the best end of the World Cup for Spain, it did give Spanish journalist Joaquin Maroto the opportunity to make one last World Cup-related joke on his Twitter account, saying, "I think Alba confused Matallanas with Arjen Robben. Because he told Matallanas what he should've said to the Dutchman."
I guess you could say this is Alba's most defensive performance of the entire World Cup.