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The five reasons for Real Madrid’s struggles in the last few matches

Couldn’t beat RB Leipzig or Girona

It hasn’t been a great week for Real Madrid, who suffered their first loss of the season away at RB Leipzig before being held to a 1-1 draw by Girona on Sunday.

There are several reasons for the drop-off in form and we take a look at five of them here

Defensive fragility

When Real Madrid conceded three goals against RB Leipzig, the most they’d let in in a game this season, it happened after Carlo Ancelotti changed three members of his back four to start Lucas VazquezNacho and Antonio Rudiger, with the latter initially used as a left-back.

Three more changes were made for the Girona game, as Dani CarvajalDavid Alaba and Ferland Mendy returned to the starting line-up, but they also conceded late on because of the Marco Asensio handball penalty.

No Benzema means a lack of spark


Real Madrid were too predictable against the German and Catalan teams in the absence of Karim Benzema, with most of their play going through Vinicius and with the defence aware of this.

Rodrygo has been playing more centrally to compensate, but it’s just not the same without the Frenchman and Los Blancos lack a spark from the No.9 position.

The shadow of Qatar

While Ancelotti has said that the recent absences were based on decisions to benefit the club, it is clear that the World Cup being just around the corner means some players may be taking their foot off the gas so that they don’t pick up an injury.

Having a World Cup in the middle of the season certainly makes the 2022/23 campaign a strange one.

Rotations are only limited


While Real Madrid may have a very deep squad, Ancelotti is only rotating a little bit.

Only Rudiger is really being used in defence and only Marco Asensio has made any headway in attack.

So, fatigue is still a factor since the Italian is only selecting from a limited pool of players, even when he does change up the Gala XI.

Tired legs


At the hart of it, the physical fatigue is weighting heavily on Real Madrid at this stage of the season.

Ancelotti: In 30 years of coaching, only two players asked me not to play them because of rest, they were…

He revealed who they were

Carlo Ancelotti shared an interesting anecdote in his Friday press conference, speaking ahead of Getafe vs Real Madrid on Saturday.

The coach was asked if he fears that certain players might only half-heartedly go into tackles in the next few weeks to avoid picking up a pre-World Cup injury.

“I know my players and I’m not worried,” Ancelotti said.

“We will need to evaluate these the distribution of rest well.

“But, what actually happens is that usually fatigued players lie to tell you the opposite, that they’re fine.

“That can cause an injury, so I’d prefer my players to tell me if they’re not 100 percent.

“But that’s only happened twice in my 30 years of coaching.

“One time was with Pepe for a Champions League final and the other was with Clarence Seedorf in a league match.”

Ancelotti provides an update on Benzema and Courtois’ fitness


In the press conference, the coach also provided an update on Benzema after reports that he might be rested against Getafe.

“He might be rested, but he’s not yet ruled out and we’ll see on Saturday morning,” the coach said.

“If he feels better, he’ll play the match.

“He was key for us last year and I firmly believe he can be key for us this season too.

“With Courtois, he misses this game and maybe the midweek one.

“Taking the flight to Poland might not be the best thing for him.

“But, I think he’ll certainly be back for El Clasico.”

Getafe defeated Real Madrid last season


The Clasico isn’t the priority yet and Ancelotti is keen to remind his players that Getafe won this fixture 1-0 last season.

“We remember the struggles we had in this fixture last season,” he said.

Getafe always play with intensity and good organisation. They don’t give you much space.

“It’s not easy to win away at their stadium, but we’re confident.”

Source: Mirror

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