Real Madrid: 3 players who must shine with Ferland Mendy injured

Real Madrid, Ferland Mendy, Zinedine Zidane (Photo by JAVIER SORIANO/AFP via Getty Images)
Real Madrid, Ferland Mendy, Zinedine Zidane (Photo by JAVIER SORIANO/AFP via Getty Images) /
1 of 3
Real Madrid, Marcelo
Real Madrid, Marcelo (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images) /

Real Madrid fans received some more bad news on the injury front this Saturday morning before Sunday night’s clash between Los Blancos and rivals Getafe. Starting left back Ferland Mendy could miss two weeks with a left soleus muscle overload, having run more than any other player in the Champions League.

Mendy will not play against Getafe and potentially two more league games. His defensive impact will be missed greatly. So who must rise to the occasion and shine without him?

LB Marcelo

The first player on the list is the most obvious, and that is fellow left back Marcelo. Ferland Mendy took over his place in the starting lineup last season and has never looked back. Real Madrid are immeasurably better when Mendy starts as the left back over Marcelo, who cost Real points earlier this season with some ghastly decisions. His performance against Valencia was a particular lowlight in the 2020-2021 campaign.

Of course, Marcelo is still an asset in the attack, as we saw a couple of months ago in a 2-0 win over Getafe. He can still create chances and beat defenders, though he has trouble covering in defense himself. If Marcelo can avoid making catastrophic errors in the next few games, including against Cadiz for a second time, then Real Madrid should be able to weather the storm.

There is a massive drop-off in defensive quality between these two, but having some center backs return and a shift to a back three can help alleviate the pressure of Marcelo to defend.