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‘King’ Ruud makes a striking display in Marbella

PUBLISHED: January 9, 2013 at 10:15 am  •  LAST EDITED: September 24, 2013 at 7:48 am
Andalucia, Malaga, Sport  •  19 Comments

‘King’ Ruud makes a striking display in Marbella

• Ruud Van Nistelrooy dressed as a Middle Eastern King

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SOCCER star Ruud Van Nistelrooy controversially visited a Spanish children’s hospital ‘blacked up’ as a Middle Eastern king.

The former Manchester United and Real Madrid player dressed up as King Balthazar for the traditional ‘reyes’ parade through Marbella.

The Dutchman, who now lives in Marbella, later visited a children’s hospital in the get up.

Wearing black face paint and a leopard print robe, Nistelrooy caused a stir with some fans branding him racist for the ill-advised stunt.

One fan told the Daily Mail: “He clearly though he was doing a good deed but he just didn’t think it through.”

However most locals loved his appearance, which was never intended to cause offence.

He was recently quoted as saying how much he loved the ‘quiet life’ in Spain and how well he had been accepted by the community

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January 9th, 2013 11:04 am

hahaha, funny! Great stuff for the Kids, and nothing more ! Racist is the pointy finger !


January 9th, 2013 2:59 pm

What a prat. It’s still possible to cause offence even when one claims no intention to do so.It’s unconscious racism, which stems from not giving a toss, or even thinking about others feelings. Imagine the B.B.C. bringing back The Black and White Minstrel Show…..

Stuart Crawford

January 9th, 2013 4:31 pm

your comment will fall on deaf ears. When I worked in the Netherlands at the end of the 70s’ I was sick and tired of hearing overtly racist comments from English and Dutch workers at a big oil pipe production plant I was working in.

So I set up a banner in the canteen – this is an apartheid area, no white aryans beyond this point, only human beings allowed.

I organised a ‘bring your own food’ day. So all the Turks/Morrocans/Indisch and Afro Surinamers/Scots and Irish enthusiastically embraced the idea – the different cuisines were wonderful and everybody tried the food from others cuisines. When the Dutch managers came in and told me to take down the banner I told them their fortunes and they quickly retreated.You should have seen the faces of the racist English and Dutch.

It became a regular event every week and eventually turned into a ‘bake in’ at various homes across Rotterdam. I held my ultimate bake in just before I returned home – Israeli/Palestinian/Turkish/Bosnian/Croat/Scots/Irish/Indisch and Afro Suris and a renegade Dutch social worker – we each said grace according to our cultures and joined hands – a very special day in our lives, never to be forgotten.


January 9th, 2013 4:57 pm

Stefanjo – I understand exactly what you’re saying.
Stuart – I loved your “bake in”!!! I’ve participated in similar events – we called it “Celebrating Diversity” and people dressed in their native clothing and brought a food dish of their native home. It’s such a wonderful experience!


January 9th, 2013 6:01 pm

I really don’t think he meant any harm but we have to be conscious that blackface is still very hurtful. It is not always the intent but the impact. I say this as an African-American.


January 10th, 2013 11:23 am

I was in Madrid for the Cabalgata. Strangely the “black” king was white, but he was accompanied by two real black bongo players. I wonder what they thought.


January 11th, 2013 2:57 pm

Let’s get a grip. Look at it another way: If a black person put on white facepaint to take part in a traditional play within his culture, would this be a problem? As a white person I would not be in any way offended (assuming the intention behind it is harmless). In Spain, people simply do this to represent one of the 3 kings who was assumed to be black – it is not done out of malice. We need to keep a sense of proportion.


January 11th, 2013 3:50 pm

hahahaha this is funny. Ruuud! As if he’s being RACIST?! Most 3 king’s parades have a blacked up king. Plus we shouldn’t even be talking about skin colour. It’s always a black king/blacked up king in the parades – get over it! Now is there anything important to talk about?…

We should be happy just to have fantastic parades during the year to appreciate throughout Spain rather than NOTHING back in the uk. Just back at work… all depressed in the cold and rain…


January 11th, 2013 5:28 pm

Gillian and Roger, Thumbs up for your spot on comments !


January 11th, 2013 10:10 pm

Gillian+Roger: exactly what I mean by unconscious racism. Usually perpetrated under the cloak of “just good fun” At whose expense? You were right Stuart.


January 12th, 2013 5:32 pm


You seem like a good guy and a thoughtful person. But I don’t buy the unconscious racism card. I have worked long enough in the Diversity and EO field to know that we well meaning white liberals are beginning to lose our sense of humour and sense of perspective. It is so easy to throw the word racist around and I believe that over-zealousness creates barriers between people, rather than understanding.



January 12th, 2013 6:03 pm

I think Stefanjo is projecting his thoughts onto others?


January 12th, 2013 6:40 pm

Gillian: I refer you to the comment left by Christine.


January 12th, 2013 9:04 pm

Roger: I refer you to the meaning of the word “comment”.


January 13th, 2013 2:36 am

Stefanjo: you’ve been misguided on this thread. This is a celebration of when the Three Kings arrived in Bethlehem, with local people in fancy dress. That’s all…


January 13th, 2013 5:13 pm

“Nistelrooy caused a stir,with some fans branding him racist for the ill-advised stunt” Did you miss that bit Roger?


January 14th, 2013 12:21 am

Do you honestly thing he was being racist Stefanjo?


January 14th, 2013 12:26 am

‘think’… can’t type


January 14th, 2013 12:37 am

Stefanjo – I’ve just realised why people aren’t commenting on here much – it’s because this is so dull & tedious! next…

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