Rodrygo Goes did something very important for his development

Real Madrid, Rodrygo Goes, Karim Benzema (Photo by OSCAR DEL POZO/AFP via Getty Images)
Real Madrid, Rodrygo Goes, Karim Benzema (Photo by OSCAR DEL POZO/AFP via Getty Images) /

It has been quite some time since that ‘Majestic Modric’ pass to Rodrygo Goes against Chelsea that started the passageway for Real Madrid’s tenth Champions League semifinal in twelve seasons. While we have all settled down to the happenings of yet another magical night in Madrid, something that hasn’t been too much praised is the role Rodrygo has taken on since then.

Real Madrid’s right flank had suffered from collective inconsistency from the likes of Marco Asensio and Rodrygo Goes. While Asensio and inconsistency have been a long affair, Rodrygo, also seemed to be throwing away momentum after a few good displays. It seemed like he would take two steps forward and one step back. He also wasted a brilliant opportunity on the preferred left-flank against Granada in Vinicius Junior’s absence through a suspension. However, the young Brazilian is changing the narrative for the good.

It all started against Getafe in the league. Real Madrid flew back from London after a thumping 3-1 win against Chelsea in the Champions League. Fede Valverde who started on the right-wing in London was given a shift back at his natural right midfield role. Rodrygo Goes got his start and dazzled in his display. He placed four key passes, won his side two free kicks, completed two dribbles, and took two shots, per WhoScored. Moreover, he played a key role while combining with Lucas Vazquez for the second goal of the match for Real Madrid which helped them to a nerve-less ending.

Madridistas, however, were worried. They were well aware of Rodrygo’s tendencies to drop down after a good display. They knew that he wasn’t the best when it comes to building on the momentum gained from previous displays. The tensions were even higher when Los Merengues conceded three goals to Chelsea at the Bernabeu in the following game. They were staring death and Rodrygo Goes was called up by Carlo Ancelotti who really was throwing all his attacking pieces onto the field. To everyone’s surprise, Rodrygo, as we know it today, ended up making the difference with some world-class help from Luka Modric.

Real Madrid, Rodrygo Goes
Real Madrid, Rodrygo Goes (Photo by Fran Santiago/Getty Images) /

Rodrygo Goes continued to be the vital difference-maker

It was two steps forward in the two previous games, so was it time for that one pending step back? Real Madrid was in pieces during the first half against Sevilla at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan. They conceded two goals via two massive defensive blunders that Sevilla forced them into. Although Los Blancos recovered towards the latter part of the first half, they still didn’t have a goal.

Don Carlo decided to bring on his super-sub from the last game. Rodrygo pulled his socks up and adjusted his boots. He never looks confident, does he? A young 21-year-old boy asked to be a half-time sub and rescue a match where his team had fallen two goals behind. But, Rodrygo had it in him. Right from the start he got into good positions and looked to make things happen for his club. Some brilliant combination play between Vinicius Junior and Dani Carvajal finally led to a cross. Rodrygo deceived the Sevilla defense with his movement and got in front of two center-backs to touch the ball first-time. That one subtle touch blasted the ball into Yahsine Bono’s roof. Rodrygo did have goals in his boots.

But, he wasn’t done yet, he would once again be in the pick of things as his good work near the by-line led to the winning combination play for Real Madrid. The Brazilian’s cut-back was converted by Karim Benzema who unleashed a shot with two touches to win the game for Real Madrid. They added all three points in their bag and possibly a 35th LaLiga title that night. And, Rodrygo Goes was the man who changed the game through his finishing and creativity.

It was three great games in a row for the young Brazilian. The manager decided to rotate his squad in the next game against CA Osasuna keeping the upcoming clash against Manchester City in mind. Rodrygo, who changed two consecutive games off the bench as a super-sub was rewarded with a start. Even better, he was asked to play on his preferred left wing. This time, it was a different story. Rodrygo didn’t look subdued. He didn’t look like a player who was struggling for starts or was overburdened by the demands of a club like Real Madrid. He simply looked in his element.

He dribbled the ball for fun that day, he toyed with the Osasuna defense. Every time he was on the ball, Madridistas were on the edge of their seats. Although Rodrygo didn’t score or recorded an assist that day, he took a much bigger step toward his development. He started showing that he was a player that the manager could depend upon. He placed four key passes, completed three dribbles, and won his side a free-kick. But most importantly, he produced an entertaining performance that didn’t make Madridistas miss their regular left-wing superstar, Vinicius Junior.

Next big-game player in the making?

As I see it, Rodrygo is a smart player who possesses exceptional footballing intelligence. The little things that he does effects the impact his performances make. For example, his laid down assist to Luka Modric to open the scoring against Athletic Club in the Supercup final was one such special moment. Or his intelligent movement in the box to score goals like the one he scored against Inter at San Siro, or the roofed finishes against Shakhtar and very recently Sevilla are further examples of his genius.

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A better examination of these impacts or moments that he has created with fair regularity in his Real Madrid career show that these are moments of importance. Los Merengues wouldn’t have won against Inter Milan if it wasn’t for his goal at San Siro. His involvements against Chelsea and Sevilla speak for themselves. He was termed Real Madrid’s current Mr. Champions League by Madridistas due to his consistency in the marquee competition. That is again a major rejoice for the Merengue club. Rodrygo is developing into a player for the big occasions and he recently took a very big step to aid his development with four great games in a row to shake off the questions surrounding his consistency.