We’re at that point in the season where everything is on the line. Over the next few weeks we will witness some sort of triumph or bitter disappointment.
Let’s look clearly at the facts so we can be soberingly realistic. No team has ever won 2 Champions League trophies in a row. So, combining that with the mediocre play of the past few months, I would say that our chances are slim to none of repeating. Nevertheless, with 2 rounds and one final left to take home the prize, there exists a small chance.
That leaves us with the league title. For me it is the top priority this season. The top priority in the respect that we absolutely must win it. Not since 2012’s team coached by Mourinho have we taken the league title. This is unfortunately the sad reality of Real Madrid’s situation in the 21st century. Our glorious Decima and Undecima CL victories have helped mask our huge failures in the domestic arena.
Fortunately the team up north is heavily struggling to avoid dropping points. The MSN seems to be in worse shape than the BBC. The BBC is not what it once was and this is one of the main reasons I’m not counting on a Champions League repeat.
Cristiano Ronaldo is finally showing his age at 32. He gets less shots on goal than he used to. He converts less of the shots he gets. He is less involved in the attacking play. Whereas before he would run at defenders now he mostly moves around within striking range of the goal. His numbers are still good if we compare them to your average quality striker, but at only 19 league goals with 2 months left in the season, this represents a big drop in Cristiano’s performance. Maybe now the Bernabeu faithful will begin to appreciate the 50+ goal seasons he posted for 6 years straight. We may never see that again.
Bale, as usual, is hit or miss. One match he contributes greatly, scoring and creating goals and the next match he is nowhere to be seen. He seems unable as of late to stay injury free and taking that into account it is difficult to get back to your best.
Benzema, like Bale, is Dr. Jeckle and Mr Hide. He can suck one day and be awesome the next. But with only 8 league goals to date that’s quite an underperformance for a good striker who, at 29, has never completely lived up to the billing.
The past several years Real Madrid has been heavily dependent on Cristiano Ronaldo for goals. For the past few months we have survived matches with low score lines and late comebacks. It’s clear that we need some new goal scorers to pick up the slack. While Cristiano may still dazzle us a bit more, his time of greatness is coming to an end.
With Barcelona’s equally sad state of affairs it appears we will most likely make it limping to the league title. But if we failed to do this, the season would be a complete disaster. Therefore we must be sure that no matter what happens, we can celebrate the league title in Cibeles on May 21st. And if we did the Liga Champions double, that would make for the celebration of a lifetime.