Interview with Zigor Aranalde

Hi all, we have just released a new episode which is an interview with Zigor Aranalde

Zigor talks about his time at Walsall, his partnership with Pedro Matias, the managers he worked under, and his exit from the club under Paul Merson.

The left-back also spoke about the play-off final win at the Millennium Stadium, and facing the likes of Luis Figo and Ronaldo in Spain

All that and more below

Apple Podcasts - ‎Yellow Ribbon Podcast: Episode 41: Interview with Zigor Aranalde on Apple Podcasts

Google Podcasts - Yellow Ribbon Podcast - Episode 41: Interview with Zigor Aranalde (

Spotify - Spotify


Quality first episode with a legendary left back for us. Loved it lads :blush::blush:. Memories :face_holding_back_tears::face_holding_back_tears:


Thanks mate, really, appreciate it. A proper football person who knows his stuff.

Part 2 is as good as Part 1!

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Can’t wait to listen to it fellas :ok_hand::facepunch::+1::ok_hand::facepunch:

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Looking forward to this one…. Cheers guys

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He had me from the start.

Before we started recording I said we would discuss Matias and he replied with ‘ah, my good friend Pedro’


Worked so well down that left side, the good old days….


I cant tell you how much i love Zigor Aranalde.

He was such a legend for us, that doesn’t get spoken about often enough. Imagine us signing a player that played for Sevilla now :joy:


To see him and Pedro together on the pitch was a dream. Seems so long ago


Yes it does. Sadly. A player who practically never let you down.

Guess who got rid of him, oh Merson. Some oh here now re writing history that Merson a brilliant guy for us.Oh dont get me started again :rofl: My head will fall off.

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Zigor talks quite a bit about his exit and the reason why in the pod. Really interesting how it developed

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I am not that far in yet to be fair. Enjoying it so far.

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Only on 30mins but the memories are flooding back. The 200/01 team was my favourite team. It was so fun to watch.


Yeah so basically Merson was useless, if we are being polite, as Zigor was describing it :joy:

Those halcyon days leave great memories as the years pass by. Indeed, one of my first usernames on UTS in the good old days was “Red Boots”, amongst others.

I do recall though the amount of times i would curse “Red Boots” for some piece of calamitous defenfending resulting in a goal being conceded but loved him linking up attacking with Pedro.

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Enjoyed this as I am a big fan of Zigor (wen Pedro???). It prompted me to take a look back at the stats and that relegation in 2004 really was a sliding doors moment for the club. In the 20 seasons that have followed we would have stayed up 17 times and only 1 team has gone down on more points that us.

I know everyone (Man City aside) thinks their club is unlucky, but I’ve often felt our beloved Saddlers have not been blessed in that department. It really was the moment that started the continued decline of the club. Whilst a lot of what happened since then has been down to poor decisions both on and off the field that relegation from the Championship really hit us hard.

Who knows where we would have been now but we were on the cusp of being established as a Championship side, instead we are now struggling to finish top half of L2.


We went down and Merson stayed as manager so he would have been manager in the Championship the next season.
We would have been relegated with almost 100% certainty the next season as Bonser would have kept his beloved Merse in the job for as long as possible

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Yes you are probably right on that front, perhaps then the sliding doors moment was sacking Lee. That side was something special, probably the best we have ever had and staying up for a third season would only have allowed us to strengthen it further.

I guess like Zigor in the podcast said it was going down by 1 goal and at the time that was the highest ever points tally a team was relegated on. Not that I’m bitter or anything :slight_smile:


Yeah it’s not like there were any unnecessary goals conceded like 6-1 at home to Coventry and 5-0 away to Norwich that season either :man_facepalming: :sob:

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Losing to Gillingham away 3-0 actually did more damage I think, that was a grim day.

I look at it a bit like this though, if we stayed up I assume Merson would still have got the job, and I think the following season could have been a tough one.