After completing their pre-season campaign, Real Madrid are set to kickstart their 2023/24 La Liga campaign when they take on Athletic Club on Saturday.
Heading into this game, it was reported that Carlo Ancelotti would bring in some changes in the starting eleven, notably benching some of the veterans.
Real Madrid’s midfield for the season opener
In the same report, it was suggested that both Luka Modric and Toni Kroos would be dropped in order to make way for young players.
Now, El Chiringuito reports that Real Madrid’s midfield could comprise four players, as Ancelotti looks to pivot to a new formation.
The new four-man midfield could see Aurelien Tchouameni operating in the defensive midfield role, just behind the two interior midfielders in the form of Federico Valverde and Eduardo Camavinga.
New signing Jude Bellingham will complete the Real Madrid midfield by operating in the advanced position. The Englishman has been playing a similar role for much of the pre-season.
Signs of transition?
If Ancelotti does end up fielding this midfield unit, it is indicative of Real Madrid’s slow transition process in the middle of the park.
The club have spent heavily to bring in talents such as Tchouameni, Camavinga, and Bellingham in the past few years.
This was done in order to ensure a smooth transition from ageing stars such as Kroos and Modric.
Real Madrid, though, did retain the services of the two veterans as their experience could be valuable for the season ahead.
However, it will be interesting to see whether Modric or Kroos will continue to play a secondary role in the Real Madrid first-team in the coming season.
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.