Real Madrid – La Liga Doubts about style of play
Real Madrid‘s recent draws away to Elche and Osasuna have once again raised doubts about the style of play implemented by Zinedine Zidane, so the Supercopa de Espana is an opportunity for the Frenchman to silence some of his critics.
The Supercopa may seem like an inconsequential title, yet Ernesto Valverde found out last year the hard way that this is not necessarily the case. The then-Barcelona boss was dismissed after losing to Atletico Madrid in the semi-finals.
Real Madrid and Barcelona come into this year’s edition of the Supercopa with the need to win, as both look to secure the first piece of silverware on offer this season. The other two teams present will be Athletic Club and Real Sociedad, last year’s Copa del Rey finalists who have not yet disputed that final.
Neither Zidane nor Ronald Koeman come into this tournament with the same pressure Valverde had, but it’s clear that things will calm down somewhat if either of them end up lifting the Supercopa.
The French coach already knows what it is like to be under pressure this season, having breathed a sigh of relief after making it through to the last 16 of the Champions League. The positive response in Europe and LaLiga Santander raised the morale and self-esteem of the Real Madrid squad, but some of the same doubts that were present then have creeped back in now.
Zidane is the first to recognise the demands of being Real Madrid coach, so it is assumed that Los Blancos will win this trophy, even if it is not something they will be bragging about at the end of the campaign. Importantly, though, it would at least be a step in the right direction, as the recent away draws to Elche and Osasuna have made life a bit more difficult for Real Madrid in LaLiga Santander.
The semi-finals will see Real Madrid face Athletic and Barcelona take on La Real, with it viewed as a guarantee that we will see a Clasico final in the Supercopa final. Anything else would be a gigantic failure for Los Blancos or the Blaugrana.
The positive atmosphere in Zidane‘s squad seems to have diminished slightly, and matters away from the pitch are not helping either. Sergio Ramos and Lucas Vazquez are free to talk to other clubs about signing a pre-contract agreement, while Real Madrid hope they will follow the same path as Luka Modric and reach an agreement to renew, although the Croatian’s new deal has not been formally announced.
Having travelled to Malaga for the Supercopa after the disappointing draw in Pamplona, Zidane looked to address the issues around the Osasuna game. He did not like some of the things that happened, with Storm Filomena seriously affecting their travel plans, and that is why he was not afraid to voice his opinion.
Now, the Real Madrid boss knows that the Supercopa is an opportunity for his team to get rid of some doubts and to get themselves back on track after a couple of disappointing away results in LaLiga Santander.