Iker Casillas and Raul 'manipulated' Real Madrid dressing room, says Cicinho
Brazilian right-back Cicinho has lambasted a group of Real Madrid stars from his time at the club. He verbally attacked Iker Casillas, Raul, Michel Salgado, Guti and Ivan Helguera. The former Real Madrid player claimed the group controlled the inside state of affairs including the manager and the press, essentially manipulating the dressing room.
Cicinho flourished at Real Madrid after signing from Sao Paulo before picking up an injury. He did help the side become La Liga champions in 2006-07, however, during the 2007-08 preseason, the full-back’s position was taken over by Michel Salgado and Sergio Ramos, leading to less game time under new coach Bernd Schuster. The Brazilian though believes the manager wasn’t the real reason why he was sent down the pecking order.
Speaking to ESPN Brasil, Cicinho said, "When Roberto Carlos left, I was the main (right-back), Sergio Ramos was central and sometimes on the right, and then Michel Salgado was the third-choice full-back,"
“Then (Iker) Casillas gave the second captaincy to Salgado so he could play. That's where these little groups started. Julio Baptista told me about it.
"Guti, Salgado, (Ivan) Helguera, Raul, Casillas... those were the leaders of the group. And those who entered the group were those who obeyed them.
"They were the ones who manipulated. They would eat the head of the press and the manager.”
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Furthermore, Cicinho criticised the Galacticos of his time for using the press to exploit their interests. He believes they tried to enhance their public perception by citing an anecdote, "For example, one day Ronaldo had a bad game, and the next day it came out on the front page that Raul was better than him. Raul would have had to be born three times to try to be like Ronaldo."
Cicinho also felt Michel Salgado snatched his position by unfair means and therefore requested a transfer to AS Roma who had been following him for some time. In addition to this, he spoke about his sour relationship with Salgado. On the former Real Madrid and Blackburn Rovers star, Cicinho said, "When he came into the dressing room, he greeted everyone, but when it came to greeting me, I would tie my boots."
In the 2006–07 campaign, Cicinho suffered an injury to his ACL and missed over six months. In the rest of the season, he showed promises as he scored three goals and made an assist in 24 appearances.
Presently, Brazilian Cicinho plays for the Turkish club Sivasspor after being signed by Roberto Carlos in 2013.