LaLiga 2018-19: 5 'real' reasons why Real Madrid are struggling
The ‘champions’ of Europe, Real Madrid, are languishing and how.
It is almost pitiful to see the record-holding team in such a sorry state. “This team is in ruins”, said one Marca cover; AS called it a “total write-off”. The only club to win more than 10 (13) UEFA Champions League trophies in the history of the game are now finding themselves struggling against big as well as small teams.
Real Madrid created a historic moment by winning UCL title three times on the trot. Within months of that feat though, and with the departure of their most successful manager in the club’s history, the club saw two managers take over in quick succession.
Here are five reasons which might help decode Madrid’s current miseries:
#1 A nightmare of a campaign for Julen Lopetegui
For Lopetegui, the chance to manage the Spanish national team at the World Cup will possibly never come again. But instead, he chose another of the rare opportunities: managing Madrid.
He must have thought of it as a more lucrative opportunity. He knew the risk, but still accepted the offer. But who would have thought that within 140 days of that announcement, he would actually be packing his bags?
His very first big match, the UEFA Super Cup final, proved to be catastrophic as Real lost to Atletico 4-2. Even though he started the LaLiga campaign on a bright note, winning the first three matches comprehensively, the chasms opened wide after that.
Lopetegui made some obvious errors and some shocking decisions, such as the exclusion of Vinicius Junior, the rotation of Keylor Navas and Thibaus Courtois, not starting with Bale, Kroos and Benzema against Levante, and so on. In the background of all this chaos, the result of the Clasico was somewhat inevitable, but the 5-1 thrashing, despite the absence of Messi, was an epilogue to his managerial career at Madrid.