Forecast: Real Madrid 2017/18 Season Preview: Strengths & Weaknesses - MySoccer24

Forecast: Real Madrid 2017/18 Season Preview: Strengths & Weaknesses

After a successful 2016/17 football season crowned by a Champions League and La Liga double, Zinedine Zidane and his merry men will be looking to defend both crowns as rivals Barcelona welcome a new manager and the giants of Europe spend c/pious amounts of money on new signings to test Los Blancos.

The target is on the back now for Real Madrid, but can they do the unthinkable and repeat last year’s monumental success?

Here we will look at the key points that could make or break their second full campaign with Zidane at the helm.

The Super Cup is already in the bag following the impressive 2-1 over Manchester United in Skopje on Tuesday night so Real are off to a great start.

7. Last Season


The 2016/17 season was a historical season for Real Madrid as Los Blancos celebrated double success. Not only did they become the first team in the modern era to win back-to-back Champions League trophies in Zidane’s first full season in charge, but they also out did his crowning glory in 2016 by clinching the La Liga title as well.

Balancing an assortment of riches, the French boss guided his squad throughout the whole season by fine management skills, making every player feel like a valuable member of the squad to keep the Real Madrid camp a positive one.

Beating rivals Barcelona to the title by three points while juggling suspensions and resting key stars was the icing on the cake to a fantastic year.

6. Transfers In


No significant signings as of yet, just two notable ones as promising winger Dani Ceballos, who impressed in the U21 European Championships for Spain this summer, signed for £14m. The former Real Betis midfielder could be a snip, with the creative flair and dribbling skills he has demonstrated so far in his career providing competition for places.

Another new addition was the controversial signing of Theo Hernandez from city rivals

Atlético Madrid. Captured for £25m after they broke the ‘non-aggression pact’ to not bid for players from each other, the French left-back will deputise Brazilian Marcelo in defence.

The biggest acquisition this summer could be the signing of Monaco striker Kylian Mbappé, who is mooted as a potential target for Real Madrid, with rumours circulating they are preparing a monster €160m offer for the French star.

5. Transfers Out

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With manager Zidane allegedly unhappy with the departure of four key squad players, Real Madrid have started the season badly by losing all three friendlies against rivals Barcelona, Manchester United and Manchester City. They still have a strong squad but Alvaro Morata will need to be replaced up front after his £60m move to Premier League Champions Chelsea.

Defenders Pepe departed for Beşiktaş following ten years at the club, after being nudged out of the first team by a much younger and faster Raphaël Varane, who excelled alongside Sergio Ramos last season.

As Los Blancos also allowed James Rodriguez and Fábio Coentrão to leave on loan in search of first team football, Real Madrid still look short of numbers.

4. Strengths


Real Madrid have a number of strengths, which made them such a dominant force last season. To start with, they are able to call upon Cristiano Ronaldo, one of the greatest football players ever, which always helps. The Portuguese forward was utilise in a more advanced role last year to devastating effect, often coming up trumps in the big games after Zidane sat him out for lesser fixtures to keep him fresh.

Last season they were able to call upon a mixture of talented players in any game who could make a difference, all pulling in the same direction. If Ronaldo wasn’t performing, Morata would score and when Gareth Bale was injured, Isco was immense. All over the pitch, they have star quality, with Zidane making team ethic and squad rotation the key functions of his team.

3. Weaknesses


Even though Real Madrid swept all before them last year, you could argue that the defence was their weak spot. Many have called for a new goalkeeper, with David de Gea once again linked with the club despite the best efforts of Keylor Navas as number one.

Casemiro did excellently during last year’s triumphs to protect the back four, but they still conceded 41 goals in 38 games during the 2016/17 season in La Liga. That is more than a goal a game, to correct this perhaps they need to find a greater balance and not rely purely on outscoring the opponent.

Nevertheless, you can hardly question the capabilities of a team who win La Liga and a second Champions League in a row in the same season.

2. Key Man


Need you look any further than the Real Madrid all-time top goal scorer. At the age of 32, you could allow the Portuguese talisman the chance to slow down in the twilight of his career, but he defies logic and continues to get better and better.

Bagging 42 goals in 46 appearances last year, he is still the main man at the Santiago Bernabéu and will continue to be for a few years yet.

Potential breakout: Dani Ceballos

1. Predictions


Although they have started pre-season in a negative fashion losing the first three games, with Barcelona adjusting to a new manager and Atlético Madrid moving into a new stadium while struggling after the transfer ban was upheld, Real Madrid should be the early favourites to defend the La Liga crown.

However, if they do not replace the key outgoing players who made up the core of the squad back-ups, they could struggle to juggle three major trophies once again. Every team will be set out to bring down Real Madrid, it will be up to Zidane to balance the squad and keep Ronaldo fresh once more to give his side the best chance of another hugely successful season.

Final position: 1st


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