Very early in the 2023/24 season, Real Madrid were struck down with injuries to several key players.
While Dani Ceballos, Ferland Mendy, and Arda Guler had been sidelined since pre-season itself, Thibaut Courtois ruptured his Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) only a few days before the first game of the campaign.
Then, on the day that Los Blancos opened their new campaign against Athletic Club, Eder Militao succumbed to the same fate as Courtois, with an ACL rupture sidelining him for the long term.
Militao’s injury not as serious as Courtois’
Militao’s absence comes as a huge blow for Real Madrid, considering that the Brazilian international was a permanent fixture in Carlo Ancelotti’s defensive line.
The 25-year-old had established himself as one of the leaders of the defensive unit over the past couple of seasons, and naturally, his long-term injury is a cause for concern.
However, according to a report from Jose Felix Diaz of MARCA (h/t Madrid Xtra), Militao’s injury is understood to be much less serious than Courtois’ injury.
As such, it is claimed that the Brazilian international’s recovery will be much simpler and easier in comparison to his teammate.
The report further suggests that Militao could very well feature for Real Madrid towards the end of the ongoing season, which will be a welcome boost for Ancelotti & co.
Real Madrid have not signed a replacement
Soon after Courtois’ injury, Real Madrid wasted no time in roping in a replacement, signing Kepa Arrizabalaga on loan from Chelsea.
However, no such move was made to replace Militao following his ACL injury. Instead, Ancelotti and the Merengues decided to rely on resources within the club to make up for his absence.
Antonio Rudiger and David Alaba have thus assumed duties as the first-choice centre-back pairing now, with club captain Nacho Fernandez being the backup.
Apart from Nacho, Ancelotti could also turn to the likes of Ferland Mendy and Aurelien Tchouameni as options at centre-half.
In addition, academy talent Marvel is also an option, having been training with the first team regularly following Militao’s injury. It remains to be seen whether they move for someone in January.
French midfielder admits considering PSG move before Real Madrid called him
Aurelien Tchouameni has had an exciting start to his career at Real Madrid. Since joining the club for almost €80 million last summer, the young Frenchman has now become a pivotal figure in Real Madrid’s midfield unit.
However, prior to his move to Santiago Bernabeu, the midfielder was closely linked with a move to Paris Saint-Germain.
In a recent interview, Tchouameni opened up on his links to PSG but revealed his decision to join Real Madrid.
Aurelien Tchouameni on PSG links
Talking about speculations linking him to PSG, Tchouameni said (h/t Madrid Zone), “PSG? Frankly, I thought about it. It’s a very big European club, we want the French clubs to succeed.”
“But honestly, when Real Madrid calls you, it’s very complicated to say no,” Tchouameni added.
The midfielder was linked with a move to PSG during his time at AS Monaco. Les Parisiens wanted to sign the youngster as part of their plans to reinforce the midfield unit.
Tchouameni, though, ended up opting for a move to Real Madrid, which turned out to be a prudent decision from the midfielder’s end.
Tchouameni’s career at Real Madrid
Aurelien Tchouameni made a total of 50 competitive appearances during his maiden season at Real Madrid.
Although the Frenchman was not entirely a first-team regular in Carlo Ancelotti’s setup, his stature in the team is expected to grow in the coming years.
Especially as Toni Kroos and Luka Modric move on at the end of the season, there is scope for Tchouameni to become a first-team regular in the Real Madrid midfield in the years to come.
The former AS Monaco starlet has already played a crucial role in the starting eleven so far this season and it is only going to continue as the season progresses.