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Back to Basics for Real Madrid

Real Madrid is widely regarded as the best team in the world. This is large because of their ability to attract the best of the best and pay whatever the price to get them. To put things in perspective, the record for “The most expensive player in the world” has been broken seven times since 2000, and Real Madrid has been responsible for 5. Including breaking it twice in the summer of 2009 for Kaka and Cristiano Ronaldo respectively. And while no one expects them to break the record every single year, it is safe to say that Los Blancos have a particular system when it comes to signing players. It had never been about the age or “just” the potential for Real Madrid. It was always about production. Whoever was the getting the most production across Europe was instantly on their radar regardless of whether he was 18, 23 or 28 years of age.
However, there seems to have been a slight shift in their approach in recent years. Since signing Gareth Bale for a then-record fee, Real Madrid has signed eleven players aged 20 or younger. Asensio, Vinicius Jr and Rodrygo are the poster boys of the group. There seems to have been a conscious effort to invest in “just” potential. However, that move has gotten them nowhere as they have been eliminated in the Round of 16 of the Champions League two years in a row, including a disappointing defeat to a young Ajax team in 2019. And while they did lift the La Liga just last season, they seem to have lost their “fear factor” in Europe.
Karim Benzema and Sergio Ramos were the only players on the team to get double-figure goals in all competitions last season, and that says a lot. Eden Hazard can’t seem to stay fit, and Vinicius Jr is electric but has little in terms of production.
Now luckily for Madrid, the fix to this is simple, “Go back to the basics”. And for them the basics is, spending big. Real Madrid did not sign a single player in the summer, so you don’t need a psychic to tell you that they will go all-in next summer. Kylian Mbappe, Erling Braut Haaland, those are the names that come to mind. Because with them, it is not “just” potential, but the staggering production also. To get those type of players, you have to be ready to spend big, and frankly, there’s no better team equipped to do that than Real Madrid.

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