Real Madrid’s luck is running out. Los Blancos haven’t impressed in many games this season, and it’s not that surprising in the mind of our writer, Daniel. They haven’t impressed me since they sacked Ancelotti, and that was the start of all their problems.
Being a culé, I very much enjoy these times. To see the club I despise the most struggling is about as good as it gets. But let’s get to the bottom of this. To be honest, Real Madrid haven’t really been a team we’ve feared during the past year or so. They got their Champions League final spot pretty much handed to them, facing Roma, Wolfsburg and Manchester City on their way to the San Siro. And you may argue the final is what really separates the true winners from the losers, but can’t we all agree Atleti deserved it way more, knocking out Barcelona and Bayern Munich to earn their place in the big final? I sound bitter, I know, but leave me alone...
I forget where I was going with that, but my point is that even as Champions League champions, they were not and are not a team to fear until things change. Zidane was a great player, and is probably fantastic with the squad, but I’m not so sure he’s the man to take this Madrid side to the big titles in the coming years. Given what we’ve seen so far this season, this year’s edition looks uninspired and confused. Don’t get me wrong, Real Madrid has an incredibly talented squad and in the end almost always turn out winners when the ref blows for full time, but this isn’t about that. A win is always a win, but for teams such as Real, the three points are worth less in the long run, if it means they’re not ready for the bigger games. The spring always comes, and Los Blancos will be there when it’s time for the Champions League semi-finals. But as long as they keep scrapping wins at the very end of games or just settle with one goal wins, or even drop points at times, they will never be ready for the German and Catalan armies.
The problems go back to the end of the 2014/2015 season. My dearly beloved Blaugrana were treble winners, and we all had the time of our lives. Meanwhile in Madrid, things looked a bit different. Florentino Perez watched us celebrate like mad men and, as he always does, went nuts. He seems to have forgotten about last May. La Decima, which he dreamt of for so long, was finally his. Ancelotti had brought it to him. But it was as if all that was blown over and way back in the past, and as a result of Perez’s lack of patience (and memory apparently), Ancelotti was sacked just one year after his big triumph. The aftermath of it all was problematic with Cristiano Ronaldo, among others, criticising the president’s decision.
When the time came for Perez to pick a new manager, he decided that it was time for the club to go back to its’ roots and thought to himself: “Who is the best manager out there ever to grow up in this club? Ah, Rafa Benitez! Brilliant”. Rafa was appointed, and started the season as manager for Real Madrid, a job he had always dreamed of. He finished the season in Newcastle, who got relegated from the Premier League. Says it all really.
I’m not saying Zidane is a poor manager or tactician, but as things stand they could really use some structure and clear game plans, and with his lack of experience I just don’t think Zidane can give them that at the moment. But maybe it’s time for him to prove me wrong.
Spanish Football Expert