Real Madrid: 5 players who will be crucial in the UCL

Real Madrid (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images)
Real Madrid (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images) /
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Real Madrid,
Eden Hazard of Real Madrid (Photo by Diego Souto/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images) /

Eden Hazard

Though Eden Hazard had arrived in 2019 June, he has played only one big game so far and it was the 2nd leg against Manchester City in August 2020. Injuries have hampered his Real Madrid career, and they have affected his overall performance as well. He hasn’t been able to justify his 115 million price tag, and the pressure on him is increasing with each passing week.

With Eden Hazard and Marco Asensio struggling, Karim Benzema has to take up more responsibility than ever. If you compare Real Madrid’s attack to the attacking line of other top European clubs, you can observe that each of those teams have dangerous players in each position of the forward line, and they don’t have to rely upon the only person for goals. If Real Madrid want to compete in the UCL, then there’s a clear need to change the way their attack is functioning and it is time for the attackers to step up big time. And the focus will be on the Belgian, who hasn’t been able to meet the expectations people had from him so far.

But this tie vs Atalanta might be his best chance to silence his critics. As mentioned above, he has played only one big game so far, and he hasn’t played a single Clasico in these 2 seasons. If he is able to perform well in this game and take Real Madrid to the quarter-finals, then this might be the turning point of his Real Madrid career. But he needs to maintain his fitness to be ready for this game, which is going to be played against highly physical opposition. And he has to solve few more issues before being ready for this game.

Since his return from the thigh injury he picked up in the Alaves game in November 2020, there have been some worrying signs from his games. Eden Hazard was one of the best dribblers of the last decade, but right now he is hesitating to take on a player. He is shying away from attempting a dribble, and that is not at all a good sign. Let’s hope that he gets back to his best soon, and he doesn’t have to continue like this. There are 23 more days till the matchday, and he might improve with game time.

But if he can’t take on the players, then there are other ways using which he can make a difference. His combinational play is one of his major weapons, which can be very lethal to break down a defense. He has those tricks in his bag, and all those one-twos and back-heel flicks can be very useful when facing a seasoned defense. He is a good finisher as well, but he doesn’t often get into those goalscoring positions. When you have a world-class midfield providing you the perfect service, then you have to make a lot of runs to get onto the end of their killer passes.

If Eden Hazard gets back to his best before the Atalanta game, then one thing is for sure. Atalanta’s defence wouldn’t find it easy to deal with him. We all know how effective Eden Hazard can be on his day, and now let’s hope that we get to see that lethal version of Eden Hazard for the all-important fixture.