Real Madrid Transfers: Loaning out Eder Militao would be a terrible idea

Eder Militao of Real Madrid (Photo by Mateo Villalba/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)
Eder Militao of Real Madrid (Photo by Mateo Villalba/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images) /

Real Madrid have already agreed to loan Luka Jovic to Eintracht Frankfurt, but here’s why they should not make the same move with Eder Militao.

The 2019 summer transfer window is viewed with very different eyes to start 2021 than it was to start 2020. Whereas there was still optimism and hope last year, Real Madrid fans are more cynical about Florentino Perez’s decisions and the way Zinedine Zidane has used the young players acquired. Right now, Rodrygo Goes looks like a “hit” and Ferland Mendy is a sure-fire starter, but Eden Hazard continues to struggle for form and fitness, while Eder Militao and Luka Jovic were cast-offs in the squad.

Jovic has finally earned his loan move after much speculation, returning to Eintracht Frankfurt – the club where he scored nearly 30 goals in the 2018-2019 campaign, which led Real Madrid to purchase him in the first place. The loan move came after Jovic played a meager 149 La Liga minutes for Los Blancos.

Interestingly enough, that’s 14 more minutes than Eder Militao, who has been reduced to an even lesser role in 2020-2021 than in his first season with the Royal Whites. And this is despite the fact that he was widely praised for his performances for the club in 2019-2020, specifically in a crucial win at San Mames over the summer.

Therefore, it’s no surprise to hear that Militao, who is now the fourth-choice center back behind even Nacho Fernandez, is mired in loan rumors of his own. Tottenham and Jose Mourinho have been linked with Militao again.

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Loaning out Jovic is great for the striker’s confidence and development, since he will actually play in the Bundesliga for Adi Hutter’s side. But from Real’s perspective, it is risky. Now, Los Blancos have only two strikers in Karim Benzema and Mariano Diaz. But at least they have other emergency options, such as playing Marco Asensio up top, Eden Hazard as a false nine, or using a 4-4-2 diamond with a forward next to a striker.

However, the same cannot be said about the flexibility navigating a loss of depth at center back. This season, all four of Real Madrid’s center backs have missed time with injuries or a positive COVID-19 test. Nacho has stepped up admirably when needed, including against Inter Milan, but the veteran center back has suffered his own nagging injury issues over the past couple of years.

Eder Militao can become a leader at the back for Real Madrid one day

If two Real Madrid center backs were to miss time and the club agreed to loan out Militao, then who would start at center back? Let’s say the injuries happen to Sergio Ramos and Nacho. Who starts next to Raphael Varane without Militao? Do they put Casemiro there and pray for the best? Try out Ferland Mendy at center back? You can’t tweak a formation to play with one center back or masquerade another player as a central defender like you can with strikers.

Militao can be a world-class center back for Real Madrid. He showed clear talent in the 2019-2020 season. And, of course, there’s a reason why Real bought him in the first place for 50 million euros from FC Porto. He stood toe-to-toe with the best of the best in the Champions League in the 2018-2019 campaign.

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Zidane needs to trust Militao more and actually play him. He must. Militao’s development should be a priority for Real, moreso than throwing money at Pau Torres or Dayot Upamecano if they don’t absolutely need to. Money is tight. Playing Militao is preferable to loaning him out elsewhere, because there are two dangerous possibilities. If Real loan him, he may shine and never come back, like Achraf Hakimi did. And secondly, Real may need him in a pivotal match down the stretch, only to realize he is no longer there and they have just one center back left.