Real Madrid – Celta Vigo: Zidane Calls In The Old Guard On His Return (2-0)
The new manager effect and Zinedine Zidane’s aura gave Real Madrid a platform of heightened energy to work from. Unsurprisingly, it did not produce immediate results, as players like Isco looked rather rusty. Eventually, the quality of Madrid broke through in the second half and Celta Vigo were dispatched with ease.
Tactical analysis and match report by Om Arvind.
Real Madrid’s season is dead. After two failed coaching appointments, varying tactical systems, and all sorts of lineups, the most storied club in European football is out of the Champions League and Copa del Rey and miles behind FC Barcelona in LaLiga. Desperate and at a loss, president Florentino Pérez has turned to the last man to get it right – Zinedine Zidane.
Like the first time Zidane arrived, there is a lot of hope but no expectations. That seems like an odd thing to say for a three-time Champions League winner, but Zidane has a knack for knowing when to step down and when to take charge. He gave up his job when he sensed decline and decided to come back when there was nothing left to fight for. What follows is going to be an extended pre-season, with Zidane carefully evaluating everything in order to decide how best to march forward into 2019/20.
For his first match of the season against Celta Vigo, Zidane decided to stick to what he was familiar with. He brought Keylor Navas, Isco Alarcón, Marcelo, and Gareth Bale back into the starting eleven, leaving Santiago Solari stalwarts Thibaut Courtois, Lucas Vázquez, and Sergio Reguilón on the bench. Casemiro and Dani Carvajal likely would have started as well, but the former . . .