Real Madrid: 4 things to be positive about in 2021

Real Madrid, Luka Modric (Photo by Diego Souto/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)
Real Madrid, Luka Modric (Photo by Diego Souto/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images) /
4 of 5
Real Madrid, Zinedine Zidane
Real Madrid, Zinedine Zidane (Photo by GABRIEL BOUYS/AFP via Getty Images) /

Zinedine Zidane is still Real Madrid’s manager

At one point this season, Zinedine Zidane seemed to be in real danger of losing his job, as unbelievable of a statement as that may seem to the majority of Madridistas.

Real Madrid were at risk of falling out of European competition completely after a second loss to Shakhtar Donetsk. And to be fair in hindsight, they were playing horrendous football. Immediately before that second loss to Shakhtar, they also lost to Deportivo Alaves in La Liga. Both matches can only be described as humiliating.

In response, Los Blancos played their best football of 2020 since their undefeated summer march to the title. They recorded a clean sheet against Sevilla at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan. There were still issues in that narrow win, but then they answered them all with a masterclass of a performance under pressure in a must-win match vs. Borussia Monchengladbach. Afterward, they shut out Atletico Madrid at home before winning three more matches for a six-game winning streak despite having no real rest.

Real Madrid lost that winning streak right after Christmas with a 1-1 draw at Elche, but they are still undefeated since that Champions League loss to Shakhtar Donetsk.

The players deserve a lot of credit, specifically the so-called “old guard”, for stepping up their intensity and quality. But Zidane, having received the most blame before, deserves the most credit. He never lost faith in his players, never panicked, and instead delivered when Madridistas demanded immediate results.

Zidane is the perfect coach to lead Los Blancos into a new era – a Revolution, so to speak. If even three straight Champions League titles or an immediate La Liga title last season could not convince you, then hopefully this triumphant stand did.