When Real Madrid sacked Carlo Ancelloti there where rumours that they approached Jurgen Klopp and Rudi Garcia before they contacted Rafa Benitez. As a result they failed to get both because they wanted totalitarian meaning? Meaning that Florentino Perez won’t be allowed to interfere with the teams matters, last time a manager managed Madrid in such a manner, was Jose Mourinho and it resulted in them winning three trophies (La Liga, Copa Del Ray and Spanish Super Cup) in three seasons. It also however resulted in Mourinho losing the dressing room respect in the final season, as a result they went for Benitez who agreed to their terms.
To be fair Rafa Benitez had no power over the Real Madrid team, as a result most of the decisions about the team where coming from the board meaning that in reality he had no real power. In most of the games this was Real Madrid’s XI under Rafa (4-3-3)
Danilo, Ramos, Varane, Marcelo:
Modric, Kroos, James:
Bale, Benzema, Ronaldo:
This was very strange because Rafa Benitez isn’t the type of manager to stick with the same XI he loves to use the rotation policy as he has done with Liverpool and Napoli that XI in your picture is rather a political XI . Rafa Benitez knew from the start that Real Madrid’s biggest issues are defensively and he wanted to solve them, that’s why he tried to use Casemiro as much as possible because he provided the strength and the necessary cover the back four needed. However he had little power to do this, plus most of the first XI players weren’t willing to work with him which made the task to manage the team even harder. The other problem Rafa had was Sergio Ramos, Ramos was named best defender in La Liga ahead of Diego Godin, Mustafi, Pique, Mascherano, Varane and Otamendi who where all clearly better. Ramos is Madrid’s weak link at the back and he has been for the past three seasons but because he scores goals people don’t notice it, he largely depends on Varane to make him look good. In terms of being on the ball, passing and distribution of long balls and winning ariel duals in opposition’s half Ramos is really good at it, however defensively Ramos is very weak perhaps his better off as a right back.
The picture above y’all is the evidence, Florentino Perez was the first person to address this issue in 2015 were he rightly criticized Ramos for his performance, Ramos was very unhappy and with Manchester United ready to pounce on this situation Florentino Perez managed to give him a new contract to keep him happy and to keep the Madrid fans happy because Ramos is a fan favorite. Although the contract was given Perez came out and told Marca he made a mistake giving Ramos a new contract. Even thou the Madrid fans are happy that Zizou took over their defensive issues are still visible and they still don’t have a quality defensive midfielder and they are lacking a quality centre back who will really help out Varane, and these are the issues that will come back and hunt Madrid. Real Madrid have only played three games under Zizou and won two games, drawing the other one. A lot of the Real Madrid players including Ronaldo, Toni Kroos and Keylor Navas have all said that they are happier playing under Zizou than Rafa.
When Zidane took charge of Real, Isco and Daniel Carvajal where brought back into the squad resulting in James and Danilo being dropped onto the bench, which was the right thing to do because Isco is one of Real Madrid’s most consistent players and they need him in the midfield, as for Danilo in terms of going forward his very good but defensively his very weak. Real Madrid’s fixtures in January look very winnable but in February Real Madrid will be put to the limit as the face really tough teams like Malaga, Athletic Bielbao, Roma and Atletico Madrid. With their star player Gareth Bale injured for three weeks they could struggle. Bale has scored 13 goals & assisted 8 of Real’s goals this season, with James struggling with on & off issues off the pitch and Ronaldo struggling to score against the big teams Real Madrid could struggle this season.
By Tuta Ilonga, Spanish Football expert on 04/02/2016 at 22:51