Real Madrid: 5 burning questions after loss to Shakhtar Donetsk

Real Madrid, Zinedine Zidane (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images)
Real Madrid, Zinedine Zidane (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images) /
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Real Madrid, Eder Militao
Real Madrid, Eder Militao (Photo by GABRIEL BOUYS/AFP via Getty Images) /

What should we make of Eder Militao’s performance for Real Madrid?

Real Madrid started Eder Militao at center back for Sergio Ramos after the captain picked up a slight knee injury in the first half of the loss to Cadiz. Militao played very well for Ramos in the Champions League Round of 16 at Manchester City, but he did not have his finest performance against Shakhtar.

Militao was culpable during a couple of Shakhtar’s goals, making rash tackle attempts and getting caught out of position. Though it must be said that playing with Marcelo in a back four did not do the former FC Porto standout any favors.

Despite his mistakes, which were down to inexperience and overzealousness, Militao did some things well. Perhaps nobody did a better job of bouncing back in the second half from their poor performance, as he and fellow center back Raphael Varane looked much calmer. But sadly, the damage had already been done.

Militao cut out one sure-fire scoring opportunity from Donetsk with smart positioning and strength. He also finished the game with two tackles and four interceptions, showing much more composure and astute reading of the game in the second half. With a young center back, it’s an underrated performance to see this kind of strong mentality.