Cristiano Ronaldo’s movie to Juventus is undoubtedly one of the worst decision that Real Madrid has taken.
The Italian giants Juventus, are reaping the benefits of having a five-time Ballon d’Or winner in his prime while the club he left behind struggle for goals and points
Whether it was arrogance, misplaced faith or just outright stupidity, Real Madrid’s decision to let Cristiano Ronaldo leave for Juventus last summer must surely rank as one of football’s worst decisions in history.
It is clear now, more than halfway through the season, that Madrid have nothing like the firepower required to carry them through this, a season of transition, while Ronaldo continues to rack up the goals in Italy.
Madrid might well have banked €100m for Ronaldo, no small fee for a 33-year-old, but no money could possibly replace what has been taken away. Last season they finished 17 points adrift of Barcelona, by the end of this one they will be begging to be that close.
Had they got an adequate replacement then this debate might well be moot. But the fact is that there isn’t a football player alive capable of delivering what Ronaldo delivered for Real. And in a year when they also lost their talismanic coach Zinedine
Zidane, the sanctioning of his sale is proving to be catastrophic.
Without a Galactico arrival like Neymar or Kylian Mbappe, they got Mariano Diaz from Olympique Lyon instead. He chose the No. 7 shirt to demonstrate that he would be leading a new era at the Santiago Bernabeu. He will do well to score that number of league goals this season.
But all looked rosy in the garden at the start of the season when a more democratic-looking Madrid attack was scoring from all angles and giving Julen Lopetegui the positive start he needed as Madrid coach.
His methods were working well; Karim Benzema’s goal scoring pace picked up. Gareth Bale, finally liberated from the shadow of Ronaldo, became a key component in the line-up and thrived as the main man.
But Madrid’s downturn in form eventually accounted for Lopetegui. Without Ronaldo’s goals they had nowhere to turn once Benzema’s form evaporated and Bale again became injured.
Often derided as a flat-track bully, Ronaldo’s prodigious scoring feats were missed in matches Madrid should have been winning handsomely. It’s one thing complaining that Ronaldo only scores in the easy matches, it’s another thing altogether when those so-called easy matches roll around and there is nobody to put the ball in the net with any sort of consistency.
In the Champions League as well as La Liga, Madrid have come up well short. They have scored only 26 goals in their 18 league matches to date. Barcelona, top of the division, have scored almost twice that number on 50.
Unbelievably they are right now sitting outside the Champions League places. There is the very real possibility that unless they win a fourth title in a row, they won’t even be back in the Champions League next season.
What a calamity that would be and a self-imposed one at that.