Crisis? What crisis?

Crisis? What crisis?

Real Madrid blog

Anyone who has read the Spanish sports newspapers this week would think Real Madrid is suffering a catastrophic crisis, worst than that of Atletico Madrid when they got relegated a few years ago. Yet, Los Blancos have only lost one match and drawn one other since the start of the season. The rest have been all victories.

However, after losing 0-1 to Atletico in La Liga, the Spanish press and most Real Madrid fans agree that Carlo Ancelotti’s side is experiencing the first crisis of the year. And surely they are right to claim that Los Merengues are not displaying the beautiful game promised by the Italian at his arrival. But, to be fair, have they given him enough time to make an appropriate judgement?

Real Madrid have only played nine official games under Ancelotti’s reign. The team is still adapting to a new system (the Italian plays a 4-4-2 instead of Jose Mourinho’s 4-2-3-1), a new style and a number of new concepts, such as playing Ronaldo as a proper striker rather than as a winger.

Yes, some players have shown a worrying lack of attitude, but others, such as Ramos, are suffering the tiredness from a busy summer –remember Spain reached the final of the Confederations Cup in Brazil. Real has also been missing key pieces such as Varane, Marcelo and Xabi Alonso due to injuries. And even Gareth Bale has arrived in poor physical condition.

Despite having thrashed Copenhagen 4-0 in the Champions League, it won’t be easy for Ancelotti to make everything work. He needs to find a suitable role in the team for Bale –claimed by many, and not without reason, as an unnecessary signing. He also lacks a centre-midfield pair that works perfectly together –the return of Xabi Alonso could solve that. And, more importantly, he will have to deal with the never-ending controversy that will cause leaving Iker Casillas on the bench.

Establishing a new style and building up a team while facing all those problems isn’t something that can be done in a couple of months. Remember Frank Rijkaard’s first season at Barcelona, as an example. The arrival of Ronaldinho didn’t have any impact at the start, and at Christmas Barca were 12th in the league, without any real hope of winning the title.

Still, after January they turned into an unbeatable team that was close to making one of the greatest come-backs in the history and almost steal the championship from Valencia. They finished second that year, and after that they went on to win two consecutive leagues, two Spanish Supercopas and the Champions League.

So let’s give Ancelotti some time as well. Wait at least another couple of months before making any hasty judgements.