After several victories in a row Real Madrid just obtained another disappointing result this season in a match that should have been easy from the start. Elche currently sits in position #15 so it is supposed to be one of the weakest teams in the league.
There was a surprise in Real Madrid's lineup and that was the inclusion of Marcelo as the left-back. Marcelo is a historic player for Real Madrid but in the last 3 seasons, his performance has been mediocre. Right now the main left-back is Mendy but I guess Zidane wanted to give some minutes to Marcelo against a team that shouldn't have been a difficult one. Elche's goal wasn't Marcelo's fault but this tie is another negative statistic to Marcelo's participation in matches. When he plays, the team usually does badly and today wasn't the exception sadly.
Real Madrid began the match by controlling the ball and pushing Elche against its own penalty box. However, there weren't that many dangerous opportunities for Madrid in the first half. The goal is the result of an excellent shot from Asensio that was stopped by the goalkeeper, and then Modric gives a header to the bouncing ball and it went in. It was a goal that happened more by chance than by Madrid's merit.
If Real Madrid had a solid defense 1 goal might have been enough, but this season the team has proved time and time again that its defense is far from solid, and with Marcelo playing as a left-back even more so. At the beginning of the second half a silly mistake from Carvajal when defending a freekick ends up being a penalty, and Courtois is unable to stop it. 1-1 and still 40 minutes to go in the match.
40 minutes should be enough for any team to score more goals but it is not a surprise for the current Real Madrid's squad to suffer when trying to score. In the lineup, Zidane included the attacking players Benzema, Vazquez, and Asensio. Vinicius and Hazard were on the bench. I didn't like the fact that Zidane waiting until the 77-minute mark to do the first changes. He sent Hazard a Valverde to the pitch and retired Vazquez and Kross. Vinicius, which is the fastest and most electric player on the team entered the pitch at the 86 minute mark in exchange for Asensio. This was a little bit late in my opinion. The strikers Jovic and Mariano, as well as the midfielder Odegaard, didn't play and I really believe these 3 players should be enjoying much more minutes on the pitch, they spend too much time on the bench.
This match was clearly very disappointing for Real Madrid and it makes it even more difficult for them to win the league. They are still the second-best team in the Spanish league but Atletico Madrid continues to win and they have a very solid defense. So far they are clearly the best team and if they can keep up with that performance they will easily win the league. This is certainly a difficult season for Real Madrid but there are still chances of achieving good results in the end. Zidane has a lot of work to do in the coming weeks and months.