Football Scarf in the colours of
Atletico Madrid

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Club information

Nickname: Los Indios (The Indians)

Ground:  Estadio Vicente Calderon

Capacity: 54,960

Founded: 1903

Atletico Madrid was founded in 1903 as Athletic Club de Madrid by three Basque students living in Madrid. The club took its name and colours from those students’ childhood team Athletic Club Bilbao.

During the 1970s Atletico Madrid became known as Los Indios one theory is that it’s a reference to the club signing several South American players immediately after restrictions on foreign players were lifted. Or maybe it’s a cryptic reference to their city rivalry with Real Madrid? Los Indios (The Indians) were the traditional enemy of Los Blancos (The Whites), which is the Real Madrid’s nickname.

Certainly the Madrid rivalry is like few others with roots going back to the military government General Franco. Real Madrid were seen as the establishment team and the regime sought to make political capital out of Real Madrid's success and high profile at a time when the country was internationally isolated. One government minister declared "Real Madrid is the best embassy we ever had." Atletico on the other hand celebrated “a sentimiento de rebeldia” in English “a sense of rebellion.” And Atletico fans were the originators of the song now sang in many Spanish grounds "Hala Madrid, hala Madrid, el equipo del gobierno, la verguenza del país” in English  "Go Madrid, go Madrid, the government's team, the country's shame."

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