Despite having won the UEFA Supercup with a brilliant display in Cardiff, Real Madrid's start of the season was a bit disappointing. Losing the Spanish Supercup against Atlético was a tough blow, but perhaps the two early defeats in La Liga hit us harder. Once again, Ancelotti's men seemed unable to keep track of their biggest rivals on the table, possibly because of an insufficient pre-seasonal preparation and a low degree of cohesion in a roster with some crucial differences to the previous one.
A month later, however, these problems seem to be solved. The Champions League debut against Basel served as a wake-up call to our players, who have chained up seven consecutive victories since then, with an outstanding 32-5 goal difference. There does not seem to be any evident weakness in our style right now --other than the set-piece defence, which has not costed us any goal since the game against Ludogorets-- and our strikers, commanded by Cristiano Ronaldo, are showing off a degree of efficiency that is just amazing.
The only reasonable concern, right now, is that the rivals we have had to confront to complete this victorious streak are not exactly world-class. Perhaps the test we will be facing this week comes just at the right moment for us to understand which our hopes for the season should be. We will visit Anfield on Wednesday to play against Liverpool, in a game that will be crucial to determine the leadership of our group in the UEFA Champions League. Later on, on Saturday, we will have our first Clásico of the season in Santiago Bernabéu, where a victory is mandatory to maintain our options to win the league.
Carlo Ancelotti seems to have decided his favourite lineup, and for sure he would like to use it in both games, but the thing is that we will have less than three days between them. We will likely see some rotations (not more than three, I guess) in Anfield for the players to arrive to the Clásico in their best condition. Everyone at Real Madrid is aware that the points conceded against Barcelona and Atlético were very important in our league failure, and they will try to fix it this season. Or so I hope.