Today is a big day for Gonzalo Higuain. Not only is the Real Madrid striker set to play in today's El Clasico match against Barcelona, it's his 24th birthday. Just how much El Pipita will be thinking about turning another year older today is open for debate, but I'd expect any celebration will be delayed given the fact he's got a big day at work ahead.
You kind of feel bad for Higuain since a poor result for Madrid might rain on his birthday weekend a bit, but it certainly sets the stage for what could be a huge day for the Argentinian. I doubt anyone who's paid much attention to Madrid this season are not aware of El Pipita's 12 league goals, but when you have a teammate like Critiano Ronaldo (who has 17) hogging the spotlight, it's easy to forget how important Higuain is to Mourinho's side.
Thus the stage is set for Higuain to potentially have a really great birthday. Just imagine if he scores a couple goals or the match winner against Barcelona today, what a party he could have on or off the field. Since we all know players scheme about their goal celebrations, whether they would admit it or not, if I were Gonazalo I'd have something special in the back of mind for today.
He could go with the old "text of an undershirt" bit with some kind of inside joke about his birthday but that's not really fun. I suggest his teammate's get involved and should the forward find the back of the net, mime presenting Higuain with a birthday cake which he can mime blowing the candles out on...or maybe that's lame.
I suppose it's just a likely that Higuain is completely focused on the match and will worry about celebrating his birthday later but it's fun to at least speculate. Guess we'll have to watch and see what happens. I wonder if Argentine National Team teammate Lionel Messi is aware it's Higuain's birthday? He could certainly have a chance to ruin El Pipita's day.
We'll have live coverage of El Clasico from just before 4:00 p.m. ET, when lineups are released. For more on the two teams, head over to Real Madrid blog Managing Madrid and FC Barcelona blog Barca Blaugranes. Check out SB Nation Soccer and our El Clasico StoryStream for more in the build-up to the game. For more from around the world of football, follow @SBNationSoccer on twitter.