The post-Casemiro era got off to the best possible start for Real Madrid as they dismantled Celta Vigo 4-1 at Balaidos on Saturday night, thanks largely to a Luka Modric masterclass.
Carlo Ancelotti warned that this season might bring more frequent squad rotations and the first two games of the new LaLiga Santander campaign have served to prove the Italian’s message.
Modric returned to the XI and put in a performance for the ages, with the Croatian leaving the field to a standing ovation.
Modric and Jordan
It took Modric two matchdays to score one of those goals that will be in contention for goal of season come the end of the year. An apt comparison could be made, with Modric seemingly like Michael Jordan dressed as a football player.
Real Madrid centre-back David Alaba has started the season by becoming a decisive player in the attack.
Alaba has scored in his last two games for Madrid and the Austrian won a penalty against Celta, proving just how effective he can be at the other end of the pitch.
Balls to Vinicius
Every time Real Madrid find themselves stuck or in trouble, their game plan is clear: give the ball to Vinicius, much like your star player in a video game.
The Brazilian is a huge resource to the team because, when he has the ball, something is going to happen for sure and opponents know it.
Militao or Rudiger … or maybe Nacho
Ancelotti will now need to decide who Alaba’s best partner is. Militao has failed to impose himself this season with Nacho currently the superior of the pair.
New signing Antonio Rudiger will be given time but currently remains a far cry of the player who led Chelsea’s backline last year.
Real Madrid are a rock
Real Madrid have become one of those teams capable of intimidating any team across the continent. The team generate an enormous feeling of power, physically, technicality, and mentally at both ends of the pitch.