Finally Benitez has been given the axe at Real Madrid. No points for guessing by whom. With Benitez gone, perhaps it is the best time to have a considerate look on who should be joining him out of Madrid for good.
Quick but massive changes, for which the football world has now become notorious for, never bring stability. Think about it this way, to appoint a Microsoft CEO (or Apple if you prefer iphones) the relevant people contact hiring services who then in turn spend months head hunting for appropriate candidates.
After that, once the final candidate has been identified, a lengthy series of interviews and presentations follow which can amount to a further few months. That is how successful institutions are formed.
If Real Madrid wants to bring stability at the club then it has to think long term. It has to make use of its youth players. Copy Arsenal’s model for all any honest Real Madrid fan would care even though that model doesn’t bring much silverware.
As much as it pains me to say it, Barcelona’s model is just about the most effective in the world. You bring youth team players and form the core of the team from that pool of players. And then you sign one megastar every other summer to have some star power.
With that said, let’s take a look at what can be done right now (or within the next six months) to put Real Madrid on the path of stability.
Below are the list of people Real Madrid needs to get rid of if it wants to emulate Barcelona in terms of title successes particularly in the last eight years or so.
Top of the list is the former Ballon D’or winner Ronaldo. Yes, that time (which most thought would never come for a player as dedicated and obsessed as Ronaldo) has come for Ronaldo.
It’s not that he isn’t the world’s most prolific striker at the moment, the problem is that he has stopped delivering in games where Real Madrid need him the most.
And Real Madrid does need him almost every way game and every other home game. His presence has stifled the likes of Bale, James, Benzema and Jese. Keeping him (for such a huge salary amongst manner other reasons) is not feasible now.
He is 31 and as some were pointing out after Valencia draw, is not the same powerhouse he once was.
He has lost his pace, his power shots, his free kicks, his dribbling skills. The baffling part is of course that he keeps on scoring but that, I feel, is more because Real Madrid creates so many chances that a player of Ronaldo’s, even the current one, calibre has no choice but to grab some goals from himself.
When was the last time Ronaldo scored a goal that no one could have scored apart from Messi? It’s been probably years.
And Real Madrid cannot hope for a better time to sell Ronaldo. His sale would fetch Real Madrid plenty of money. Real Madrid would be able to wipe off his colossal salary off its books and bring in some players from the B team and some talent from elsewhere.
He too has to go. He is old, slow and clumsy. He may do well at a club like, say , Roma but there can’t be any place for a player like him at a club like Real Madrid. Not now, not ever.
He may be very versatile but let’s be honest here, if there is one player who can be labelled as jack of all trades and master of none then that is Arbeloa.
He just doesn’t cut it anymore. Real Madrid needs to sign young defenders who can run all game long and are quick.
His mistakes have cost Real Madrid a lot of points this year and due to that reason alone, he ranks number one on the list of players to get rid of, on any list that has been published. Ever.
He may have a lot of Champions League experience and may also be a local fan favorite but favoritism has no place at a club like Real Madrid where the need to win is constant and ever increasing.
If we can just look at are eternal rivals Barcelona and compare their right back with Arbeloa, then we must come to the conclusion that Arbeloa is the weakest link in this Real Madrid squad.
What a disappointment this guy has been. Still 24 but doesn’t look top quality at all. He is exciting when going forward, many would give him that. But emphasis is on the word exciting. He is exciting, not effective.
Carvajal is twice the right back, Danilo ever will be, on his worst day. Danilo might put RB (Right Back) has his position of choice on his contract but make no mistake, he is not a defender at all.
He can’t defend, he can’t head, he can’t tackle that well either.
His first touch is atrocious. It’s bad, it’s so bad that sometimes it seems beyond logic as to how he is able to take such a bad first touch every single time he gets the ball.
He goes forward without giving any thought to the repercussions at the back. One of the reasons why Barcelona hammered Real Madrid the previous meetings was precisely because their wing backs, Alves and Alba, were far superior in both defense and attack than Marcelo and Danilo.
Marcelo can do excellent work when going forward but he is non existent when defending against the likes of Messi, Neymar and Suarez. In any case, Danilo doesn’t even do that. What was Perez or Benitez or Ancelotti, whoever signed this guy, was thinking? Perhaps we don’t really want an answer to that question. Perhaps, we just want Danilo gone.
One of the most consistent players of Real Madrid for the past two or three years. Sadly, he has approached the cursed (in the football world, otherwise it is your best age) age of 30.
Like Ronaldo, he just isn’t the same player he was at Tottenham. Mind you, he is amongst the handful of players who still runs to help out the defenders in this Real Madrid squad.
But, he can’t control the midfield anymore. His youth covered up well for his lack of physical prowess but now, time has sneaked up on him.
Perhaps, he shouldn’t be the first player to be shipped out, but shipped out he must. Real Madrid needs a presence in the center of the midfield from where to launch attacks and control the game. Pogba is one player who can make a difference at Real Madrid. Players like Verratti and Matic aren’t bad either.
The strange thing about Pepe is that, now 32, his age has not only robbed him of his pace, strength, tackling ability, heading ability, man marking ability but also of his mind. How many times has he been the at the center of everything Real Madrid does wrong out on the field.
Against Valencia, his reckless challenge cost Real Madrid a penalty and in all honesty, it was coming.
Even in the previous matches Pepe had been involved in such incidences where the referee could have easily awarded the opponent a penalty for his mindless tackling instincts.
No doubt, he can play for some of the best clubs in the world right now, but not at Real Madrid. Not as a starter.
With Varane looking every bit the defender he was once thought of, Pepe’s time at Real Madrid is already up. It is just a matter of time. Why not speed up the process to put Real Madrid on the path of recovery and some common sense especially at the back.
Technically not a player but is the architect of whatever is wrong with Real Madrid at the moment. As former President of Real Madrid Ramon Calderon has said, that Perez is an engineer not a professional.
For me, there can be only one condition where Perez is allowed to be involved with Real Madrid in any capacity and that is, he must be robbed of any power to influence the coach.
Let’s not be hypocrites here, fans of clubs like Barcelona and Manchester United, wish they had a president who could mastermind multiple megabuck transfer moves every summer. The only problem is that Perez is alleged to have forced many of his managers to play the superstars he has brought into the Real Madrid fold at the expense of performance on the pitch.
James should never have been brought in for Di Maria. That was a bad move for everybody. James is a world class player and could prove to become a great one by the time he is done. But his journey should have been at another club, not at Real Madrid.
Di Maria flopped at Manchester United while Real Madrid missed his energy and chance creation ability on the pitch. There is no chance of signing him back but the least Real Madrid board can decide is to strip Perez of all his powers that pertain to control of players who actually get to do the work on the pitch for Real Madrid.
Perez, is not evil. He is an astute businessman. But he has little idea of what needs to be done on the field in order to win silverware. That job should be left to the coaching staff and the manager.
Perez has now had 11 managers in 12 years at Real Madrid. That is not how legendary teams are built. Real Madrid needs its Wenger. It probably needs the only one that is available at the moment and that is Arsene Wenger.
He might not win as many trophies as Mourinho or Guardiola but he would bring a sense of constant work at Real Madrid and for once, players wearing Real Madrid shirts would give their absolute all out on the pitch.
Real Madrid needs a manager that runs this club like he is going to run it for a century.
Perez is the first non-player name that should be thrown out of Real Madrid if he doesn’t agree to not interfere in player selection. He can do his thing in the transfer market.
Ronaldo is probably the first player who should be shipped off not because he is not performing but because his performance comes at the expense of Bale and James. If he doesn’t agree to a secondary role then perhaps Real Madrid needs to do to Ronaldo what Barcelona did to Ronaldinho, Eto’o and Deco just to comfort Messi and make him thrive.