Real Madrid have been unstoppable after the last international break. Though they have only won three out of four games, their only loss, too, is a moral victory as it saw them beat Chelsea on aggregate.
What has made their run more special is the fact that the team have found a route through every adversity that struck. While some wins like that as Stamford Bridge were dominating, others have been hard-fought.
Yet, one cannot help but turn the clock back to the last game before the international break. Real Madrid appeared to be in ruins against their arch-rivals Barcelona and lost by four goals at the Bernabeu.
In a recent interview, Thibaut Courtois was asked about the loss in El Clasico, which he attributed as a ‘fluke’.
“It was a very bad night, but we recovered quickly. You don’t have to think much about defeats. I am disappointed but their is a before and after that defeat. If you look at our results and our performance, it was a fluke”, he said, as relayed by El Chiringuito.
Indeed, both teams have had contrasting runs of form after the big clash. While Real Madrid have gone on to win three games and advance in the UEFA Champions League, Barcelona have struggled and got knocked out of the Europa League.
Los Blancos still maintain a 12 point lead over the Catalans in La Liga, and it is safe to say that the title is won. Nevertheless, Barcelona have one game in hand.
Having advanced past Chelsea, Real Madrid now face Manchester City in the semifinals of the prestigious European competition.
Real Madrid teenage prodigy needs to play more, insists national team manager
The situation with Arda Guler at Real Madrid has become tense in recent days. The Turkish phenom has not been at the receiving end of many minutes despite completing his recovery from injuries, and the player is now getting fed up with his situation.
It is, however, not just Guler who is affected by the situation. With the European Championships coming up, the 19-year-old looks likely to enter the competition with Turkey with no match fitness, and his international federation is far from happy with his situation.
Turkey manager speaks out
Speaking at the recent sponsorship event of the Turkish National Team, head coach Vincenzo Montella was asked to comment on Guler’s situation at Real Madrid.
As a former Sevilla coach and with knowledge of how La Liga works, he understood the circumstances and hoped for the player to see more minutes.
“He is playing very little, but I hope he can do it from now on because he has a lot of talent,” he said, as quoted by SPORT.
Montella went on to reinstate that he still maintains complete confidence in the Real Madrid star’s abilities for the upcoming tournament, despite his drought for minutes.
“We are following him very carefully. We want our players to be in their best physical condition for the European Championship.”
Exit on the cards?
Guler has played only 92 minutes all season and is now vexed by his helplessness. As revealed yesterday, he feels misguided and is unhappy with how the circumstances are currently.
The disappointed star, thus, could seek an exit, potentially on loan, from the club next summer if his situation does not improve.
But with Jude Bellingham and Brahim Diaz both on song, it does not appear like Guler’s chance in Madrid will arrive anytime soon.
Carlo Ancelotti retains faith in the Turkish star, and it remains to be seen if he looks to turn the player’s fortune around in the coming months.