Why Copa del Rey defeat is good news for Real Madrid

Why Copa del Rey defeat is good news for Real Madrid

Real Madrid blog

Real Madrid lifted their 19th Copa del Rey title last May, when they beat arch-rivals Barcelona in a very intense match. Surely many fans were expecting them to win their 20th, but Los Blancos won’t make it two in a row, as they lost to Atletico Madrid in this season’s last-16 round.

Players and fans seemed disappointed with that result, but taking a deeper look into it, the Copa defeat could even help Los Blancos succeed in the other two competitions: La Liga and the Champions League.

Following a successful 2014 and seeing the team in such a great shape, many Madrid fans were hoping to finally conquer the long-awaited treble and win all three titles. However, if they were given the chance to choose one of them to drop, that would surely be the Copa.

Carlo Ancelotti men have started 2015 in their poorest shape so far this season, losing to Valencia and Atletico and showing worrying fatigue signs. Toni Kroos is a clear example of that. Even in Los Blancos’ victory at Getafe the Germany international looked tired, losing the ball too often and failing easy passes.

Los Blancos could have hardly been able to recover their best shape playing two games a week against such strong rivals, and that’s where the Copa loss has come in handy. Check out the schedule Real would have faced at the start of 2015 had they qualify for the next round:

Saturday: La Liga match against Valencia
Wednesday: Copa del Rey derby against Atletico
Saturday: La Liga match against Espanyol
Thursday: Copa del Rey derby against Atletico
Sunday: La Liga match against Getafe
Wednesday: Copa del Rey Clasico against Barcelona
Saturday: La Liga match against Cordoba
Wednesday: Copa del Rey Clasico against Barcelona
Saturday: La Liga match against Real Sociedad
Wednesday: La Liga match against Sevilla
Saturday: La Liga derby against Atletico

Imagine playing two games a week for five weeks in a row, all of them including at least one derby or one Clasico, playing also against the fourth and fifth placed teams in La Liga (at the time of writing) and facing the only team that has beaten both Barça and Atletico this season: Real Sociedad. Crazy, right?

Derbies and Clasicos are particularly intense clashes that leave both teams especially exhausted. Playing one a week during more than a month is clearly counter-productive for the players’ physical preparation ahead of the crucial part of the season.

Having lost to Atletico, Real will not suffer from that. Moreover, they will benefit from their two main rivals facing each other in the Copa del Rey quarter-finals and surely adding an extra fatigue to their legs that could have a negative impact as they all go for major honours including La Liga.

Madrid have a great squad, but their bench is looking short and Carlo Ancelotti doesn’t seem to like rotation, so the Copa blow is really good news for Los Blancos, who will have now more time to rest and prepare to succeed in the Spanish league and the Champions League.