Once again, Real Madrid have proved every single one of their doubters wrong

Real Madrid, Champions League (Photo by Mattia Ozbot/Getty Images)
Real Madrid, Champions League (Photo by Mattia Ozbot/Getty Images) /

Winning the league and the Champions League title is a huge success for any club. But to achieve such a feat against all odds this season is an even bigger success for Real Madrid, who continue creating history by winning a record 14th Champions League title.

No one expected Real Madrid to win both LaLiga and Champions League this season. After seeing the legendary Zinedine Zidane, Sergio Ramos and Raphael Varane both leave the club, and after failing to sign Kylian Mbappe from PSG last summer, even the fans couldn’t think of winning the Champions League.

Carlo Ancelotti, the manager who won the La Decima for Real Madrid, arrived at the club, but even then the fans couldn’t dare to dream of winning the club’s favourite trophy, due to minimal changes to a squad that went trophyless last season. Some people doubted if Ancelotti would last the whole season at Madrid.

Everyone outside the club started to take it for granted Real Madrid is still a team in progress and is far away from competing at the highest level in Europe.

The season started on a positive note, and a Vinicius Jr who was heavily criticised for his erratic finishing started banging in goals consistently. Karim Benzema played at the highest level, looked like the best player in the world, and led Real Madrid to the top of the LaLiga table in the starting weeks. Fans started to get their hopes higher.

But then came the losses to Sheriff Tiraspol at the Bernabeu and the loss to Espanyol in LaLIga. as a speed breaker to the fans’ increasing hopes. And the ignorant people who don’t watch Real Madrid’s games on a regular basis started using the loss to Sheriff as an example to take a dig at the team’s capabilities.

The disrespect towards Real Madrid increased twofold, once the Champions League knockout stages began

Fast forward to the team’s round of 16 ties against Paris Saint-Germain. Real Madrid had been knocked out of the Copa Del Rey by that time, but they were still leading the LaLiga table. But since it was time for the Champions League knockout stages, where Real Madrid would be drawn against other big clubs, it was the perfect opportunity for the pundits and the football audience, in general, to judge Real Madrid as a team.

Before the knockout stages, FiveThirtyEight stated in their report that there is only a 4% chance of Real Madrid winning the Champions League, being ranked behind other Premier League teams, Bayern Munich, and even Ajax.

Real Madrid lost 1-0 in the first leg vs PSG, at the Parc des Princes, and that was enough for people to write Real Madrid off. And after the team surprised everyone with an incredible comeback against PSG, the people retorted to blaming PSG for the loss. And Micah Richards, after looking at Benzema’s hat-trick vs PSG, said that Benzema has reached Harry Kane’s level. That statement left Thierry Henry, who was sitting beside him, shell shocked.

Amidst all the chaos in the Champions League, Real Madrid lost 0-4 to Barcelona in LaLiga. Not only did this loss give an opportunity to all the critics to take a dig at Real Madrid, but it also gave an opportunity to players like Eric Garcia to talk about Vinicius Jr’s capability of winning the Ballon d’Or.

Real Madrid was drawn against Chelsea, an English team next, and here began the actual drama. Los Blancos won the away leg at Stamford Bridge 3-1, and that result surprised everyone. Thomas Tuchel chose to play mind games by stating that the tie was over after the first leg was done. His team did overturn the deficit in the second leg through a valiant performance, but Real Madrid didn’t give up and won the game in extra time. And after the game, Tuchel could only talk about how referees lack the courage to give decisions against Real Madrid. And some English pundits couldn’t refrain from talking about how Chelsea are better than Real Madrid, in spite of the fact that Real just beat Chelsea over two legs.

Real Madrid was drawn against Manchester City next, and Los Blancos produced another unbelievable comeback to drown CIty. Luckily, City’s manager Pep Guardiola acknowledged Real Madrid’s brilliance, but Peter Schmeichel on CBS Sports said that “Real Madrid have got no right to be in that final. They were the poorest team by a mile over the two games.”

People started to believe that “Real Madrid has been just lucky”, looking at the way mainstream media outlets have been talking about the club, and Luka Modric himself had to answer a question about the team’s luck.

While all these reactions were at one level, the statements and the predictions amidst all the buildup to the Champions League final were at another level. While a former Real Madrid flop believed that Liverpool will blow away Real Madrid, another former Real Madrid player went on to disrespect Karim Benzema and made a combined XI of Liverpool and Real Madrid, which included just two Madridistas in Benzema and Modric. And well, how can one forget about Mo Salah’s regular interviews about how he wants to seek revenge for his club’s loss in 2018. (while he conveniently forgot about his team’s loss to Real in 2021)

What should we call this? Is this jealousy, disrespect, or plain ignorance?

Whatever it might be, but this is just a tiny sample of the way every Real Madrid victory has been questioned this season, and how they have been doubted and written off at each and every stage of the Champions League. There was a time when people used to wait for an opportunity to question Real Madrid’s achievements, but this season, the critics literally had the license to undermine the club’s achievements at any point of the season.

Despite all this fuss, do you why the team usually remains silent and ignores all the disrespect intended towards them? Because they know that the right way to answer them is by doing their talking on the pitch, and not off the pitch. Every player knows that success speaks for itself, and finds the perfect solution to shut down their critics.

That is exactly the reason why this season is so so special. It is one thing when the team that is expected to win goes on to win the game. But it is completely another thing when the supposed underdogs go on to win. For a team with such a remarkable history, the Merengues were never going to be an underdog. But the world wanted to believe that Real Madrid can’t win, and they don’t deserve to win. And now, the same team has proved everyone wrong with their success.

This isn’t the first time the club’s achievements have been questioned, and this certainly won’t be the last time. But this also won’t be the last time we will get to see Madrid proving their doubters wrong.

Next. The best Real Madrid player to wear every kit number. dark

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Until then, let us enjoy the success and relax before the next season starts. Let us sleep happily as the fans of a club that has 35 LaLiga titles and 14 Champions League titles, and with the optimism that the best is yet to come.