Joo Silveira has been Portugal’s consul in Madrid fornike shoes online sales the past two years. Silveira was among about 400 Portuguese living in sale nike shoesMadrid who had taken over one of the city’s nightclubs, hoping to see Portugal defeat Spain, its longstanding rival and neighbor, which started the tournament as a co-favorite to win the World Cup. Their confidence stemmed largely from strong defensive play by trade Jordan Shoesa Portugal team that had yet to concede a goal in this World Cup. Another reason for optimism, according to the fans, was Cristiano Ronaldo, Portugal’s star forward and captain, who plays his club soccer in Real Madrid’s Santiago Bernabéu stadium. “Ronaldo always wins, so that’s what will happen tonight,” predicted Luis Cayolla, a director at the Madrid subsidiary of a leading Portuguese bank. Lastly, the fans were acutely aware that in their last confrontation, inwholesale authentic nike shoes the 2004 European championship, Portugal had beaten Spain, 1-0. A friendly rivalry hasnike running shoes long characterized relations between Spain and Portugal, as neighboring countries that not only developed a strong trade flow but also followed similar paths from dictatorship to democracy in the 1970s, followed by accession to the European Union a decade later. More recently, both countries have also made comparable political choices, voting in Socialist governments that are struggling to cut ballooning budget deficits. “This is a real rivalry butnike athletic shoes a healthy one,” said José Manuel Rodrigues, a Portuguese taxi driver who has worked in Madrid for the past nine years. “But my view is still that it’s better to be small and good than big and bad,” he added with a wry smile. Spaniards often joke that Portuguese have an inferiority complex toward their larger Iberian neighbors, “but I think it is the Spaniards who have a problem with us because they want to play the part of the big, powerful country while we are perfectly happy being small,” said José Fontes, another Portuguese banker. In fact, Antonio Sampaio, a Madrid-based correspondent forair jordan shoes online Lusa, the Portuguese news agency, argued that soccer supremacy was perhaps one of the only remaining subjects of contention between the two countries. “I think that Portugal and Spain are closer than they have ever been before, and if you look at the crowd here, it’s mostly young professionals who are very different to the kind of Portuguese migrants that you used to find,” he said. “Almost everybody works for multinational companies who invest in this region without making much distinction between the two countries.” The repeated and deafening shouts of “Por-tu-gal! Por-tu-gal!” from Air Max shoes onlinethe chorus of expatriate fans, however, gradually made way for longer periods of silence and anxious gasping as Spain started to dominate the game and create more goal-scoring chances. When David Villa scored the game’s only goal in the 63rd minute, Silveira lost his calm, slamming his beer on the counter and cursing the referee for not ruling that Villa had scored from an offside position. “This Argentine referee has been a great signing forair shox shoes online Spain,” he complained. Still, by the time the referee had blown the final whistle, Silveira and his compatriots accepted that Spain had been a worthy winner. “It’s disappointing, but I can now only wish Spain good luck,” Silveira said. The day had not started as a lucky one forNike Basketball Shoes online most Madrid residents, as a subway strike brought an unpleasant reminder of Spain’s economic crisis and resulted in transportation chaos. By early evening, exasperated commuters who had hoped to go home to watch the game were stuck in mammoth traffic jams, grimacing behind the wheel while being forced to listen to the start on the radio. By 10:20, with Spain finally securing its place in the quarterfinals at Portugal’s expense, traffic was still disrupted. This time, however, it was because of flag-waving fans blocking the streets to celebrate the victory and once more displaying the kind of exuberant optimism that had been on display before Spain was upset by Switzerland in the opening match. “For sure we’ll now come back from South Africa with the Cup,” shouted Juan Alonso, a student happy to wrap any bystander in his Spanish flag. “There’s just nobody better than Spain.” Air Tuned Max Air Max LTD Men Air Rejuven 8 Air Structure Triax 91 Nike Air Tailwind