Real Madrid – La Liga The Norwegian has become Zidane’s sixth midfielder
Fede Valverde and Martin Odegaard were two players from whom Real Madrid expected big things this season, but the Uruguayan isn’t decisive anymore and the Norwegian barely features. A lot of people around the club would like to see more of them, but Zinedine Zidane doesn’t think that this is the right time for either.
Valverde was one of Real Madrid‘s brightest players until the pandemic brought the 2019/20 season to a standstill. Just a year ago he was the best player at the Supercopa de Espana and Zidane used the midfielder as part of his team.
Odegaard came back during the summer as a request of Zidane, with Real Madrid taking him back from Real Sociedad despite there being another year left on his agreement there. Now, he’s gone from being one of LaLiga Santander’s revelations to becoming Los Blancos’ sixth midfielder and accumulating five minutes in the last five games.
Both are enduring tough situations at the moment, which is hard to understand. The club have absolute trust in the two of them, but Zidane doesn’t seem to view them in the same way.
Valverde, at least, has maintained the status as fourth choice in midfield and is the natural replacement when one of Luka Modric, Toni Kroos, or Casemiro are absent.
He has lost his place in the starting XI, but he remains an important part of the club’s future plans.
Yet since his injury in November, Zidane has only played him in Modric or Casemiro‘s absence. Otherwise, he takes his place on the bench and doesn’t find himself involved.
Odegaard has become a peripheral player. His last start came against Shakhtar Donetsk and he’s been left upset by his position at the club. It’s hard to understand, but he doesn’t appear to stand a chance of starting anymore.
Zidane has turned to his veterans again for his spine, and their recent good run isn’t likely to lead to changes.
The problem is that two of the club’s future stars have seen their importance and value drop, which those upstairs at the club cannot comprehend. A lot was expected of them, but it’s hard for them to deliver if they’re not playing.