Real Madrid: Being critical is fine, but be measured with Zinedine Zidane

Real Madrid, Zinedine Zidane (Photo by SHAUN BOTTERILL/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Real Madrid, Zinedine Zidane (Photo by SHAUN BOTTERILL/POOL/AFP via Getty Images) /

Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane’s three straight Champions Leagues should count for a lot more than one or two losses.

At Real Madrid, there is a certain standard expected at the club that exceeds the standards of every other club in the world. Los Blancos have achieved greatness that most other clubs can only dream of, and, therefore, the players and coaches associated with the team are expected to be the best of the best.

Therefore, Madridistas do not take kindly to performance such as Real’s loss to Cadiz this past Saturday. Nor should they. A performance like that is inexcusable for a club with Real’s resources, history, and expectations.

As the manager, Zinedine Zidane shoulders a lot of responsibility for performances like this one. He sets the lineup, dictates the tactics, makes the changes, and sets the mentality. So when the team fails in every respect, he must answer for some of that failure.

But there are two keys here. Zidane answers for “some” of that failure. Not all. And secondly, he must answer for the team’s failings on that day. They were not this poor in their other matches, despite some of the major issues being persistent problems that weren’t exposed this badly.

Real Madrid fans must know the team isn’t ready to be at its best

It is necessary for fans to be constructively critical and to help push for that high standard necessary at Real Madrid. Yet it is just as important for the fanbase to be reasonable about their manager and their expectations, especially as the team rebuilds.

Think about it this way. Much of the discussion within the fanbase is about Kylian Mbappe, Eduardo Camavinga, and Erling Haaland. The future. Real are a team looking towards the future, because it is clear and obvious that this team is not yet at the level to compete for Champions League titles. Their Spanish league title triumph in 2019-2020 was a huge positive in its own right, and Zidane deserves great credit for it.

Zidane cannot control the injuries. He cannot control COVID-19 creating an unstable economic environment that prevented Real from making any signings. And he cannot even control everything that happens on the pitch.

To call Zidane a bad manager is to state a lie that is easy to disprove. Bad managers don’t win three straight Champions League titles. A team would implode on itself if its manager were that woeful. They would not achieve an almost unthinkable feat.

However, to call Zidane infallible would be illogical, too. Even then, he had his weaknesses as a manager. Like fans do with players, those weaknesses can be addressed constructively and productively, in a respectful manner that is cognizant of Zidane’s achievements as a talent evaluator and manager at the Santiago Bernabeu.

dark. Next. The 5 players Real Madrid should have never sold

Critiques are a necessary part of being a fan, because the fanbase sets the tone and demands the best from the club. But at the same time, respect and measured reactions are equally necessary, as they prevent drastic decisions or toxicity from hurting the club.