Real Madrid: 5 players who must shine at Deportivo Alaves

Real Madrid, Sergio Ramos (Photo by PIERRE-PHILIPPE MARCOU/AFP via Getty Images)
Real Madrid, Sergio Ramos (Photo by PIERRE-PHILIPPE MARCOU/AFP via Getty Images) /
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Real Madrid, Ferland Mendy
Ferland Mendy of Real Madrid (Photo by Alex Livesey – Danehouse/Getty Images) /

Real Madrid LB Ferland Mendy

I love praising Ferland Mendy effusively, because he has been Real Madrid’s most productive signing since 2019. That’s not necessarily a high bar to clear, given how the likes of Hazard have struggled, but Mendy deserves the kind words for his elite defensive work. Once again, opponents are averaging fewer than 0.5 dribbles completed against the Madrid man this season in La Liga, according to

Mendy will need to be solid both defensively and offensively against Alaves, and the latter might be even more important against Alaves’ low block. We saw Mendy struggle to make incisive passes and the right decisions in the Supercup loss to Athletic Club, and it would be a problem for Mendy to have a similarly disappointing outing this Saturday. Mendy improved his attacking work throughout the 2019-2020 season, but he’s taken a few steps back in this campaign.

Real Madrid LW Eden Hazard

Finally, we end this list of five with the third starter in the expected 4-3-3 attacking trident at Alaves this weekend.

Eden Hazard had a few good games earlier this season in his return from an earlier injury, as he helped lead Real Madrid to a comeback to take a point at the Borussia-Park in the Champions League before scoring a worldie in a 4-1 win over Huesca.

That said, there have been more disappointing performances from the Belgian superstar than, well, superstar performances. The 100 million euro man is causing concern among the fans and increasing the pressure on Vinicius Junior behind him when Vini should not have to deal with those kinds of expectations.

Next. Real Madrid Predicted XI At Alaves. dark

Hazard will need to be special against Alaves, creating chances off the dribble and linking up with Benzema and other players in that left half-space. If he cannot create on his own, Real Madrid could struggle to score more than one goal yet again.