Real Madrid: 5 burning questions after an important win vs. Alaves

Real Madrid, Marco Asensio (Photo by Silvestre Szpylma/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)
Real Madrid, Marco Asensio (Photo by Silvestre Szpylma/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images) /
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Real Madrid, Fede Valverde
Real Madrid, Fede Valverde (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images) /

Has Fede Valverde convinced Carlo Ancelotti?

Now this is the question I really want to know the answer to, because Madridistas have been crying out for Fede Valverde to be a bigger part of the rotation for weeks – if not months.

Valverde was a key to start the season but then fell out of the lineup frequently once Toni Kroos and Luka Modric returned to full strength. He was not reintegrated into the lineup after injury woes, even after the stretch of difficult games in which Ancelotti ostensibly stopped rotation to secure a comfortable lead in LaLiga (which he has nearly blundered by, you know, not rotating).

Before the PSG match, Madridistas wanted Fede to start, understanding that his pressing, ball-winning, and ball-carrying could be decisive against such an opponent. Carletto started Valverde against Villarreal. After a game-changing substitute performance the prior week in the win over Granada, Fede was anonymous at the Estadio de la Ceramica. And Ancelotti neglected to utilize him at the Parc des Princes, suffering the consequences accordingly.

Valverde started to help Kroos rest against Alaves, and he was good. All the covering he did defensively helped Luka Modric bounce back and boss a match like he did the previous month. And Valverde played a decisive role in that impressive team goal.

Ancelotti has been stubborn with young players not named Eder Militao and Vinicius Jr., but surely he must realize how much of an asset Valverde is going forward. He needs him to win the league title, just as Zinedine Zidane did in 2019-2020.