Real Madrid have not undergone a lot of changes over the summer and yet, the team looks very different this season when compared to the last one. Of course, Karim Benzema left the club for Al-Ittihad. On the other hand, Thibaut Courtois and Eder Militao are currently out for the foreseeable future with long-term injuries. Also, Toni Kroos and Luka Modric are no longer starters for the club.
One of the most talked about has been the situation of Modric. The Croatian icon has not even been brought off the bench in the previous two matches.
That is not what he would have expected when he signed a one-year contract extension not too long ago. And there have been rumours of a rift forming between Modric and the coaching staff.
It looks like that fortunately is not the case. As reported by Football Espana, Carlo Ancelotti said ahead of Real Madrid’s Champions League group game with Napoli:
"“It is quite surprising that Modric does not have the same role as in the past. He has played the first Champions League game, the derby… and he has not played the last two because there is a very strong competition. We have no problem with him and he doesn’t have any problems with us. Sometimes I have to make decisions that are very difficult to take.”"
Ancelotti addresses rumours of rift with Real Madrid player
Modric had been a regular starter for Real Madrid for over a decade. Thus, it is no surprise that he might not be happy with his new role in the team as a cover option.
Sooner or later, this day was bound to come though. Modric is 38 years of age and surely in the twilight of his career.
Many might question why Real Madrid handed him a new deal if they did not have any concrete plans for him. Perhaps even they did not expect how well Jude Bellingham would do upon arriving.
The competition in the middle of the park is very strong at Real Madrid at this point in time. And it is hard to see Modric winning his place back in the starting XI anytime soon unless there are injuries in midfield.