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Analysis of Real Madrid's minutes so far

A quick look at how many minutes each Real Madrid player has played this season and what effect they've had on the success of the team offensively.

Denis Doyle/Getty Images

After having recently routed UE Cornella 5-0 in the 2nd round of their Copa del Rey clash, my curiosity thought it might be interesting to look into the Real Madrid players minutes played this season. So I compiled all of the necessary facts and figures and have decided to put it all into a table to illustrate who's done what. I thought that this may be useful to some of Managing Madrid's readers.

The following table includes relevant data from all matches played so far this season from all the competitions in which Real Madrid have participated including every player who has played for Los Blancos.

The hard numbers.
Name Minutes Played Goals Scored Assists Made Goals Scored or Created per Minutes Played
Toni Kroos 1743 1 7 Every 217.88 minutes
James Rodríguez 1712 9 8 Every 100.71 minutes
Cristiano Ronaldo 1687 26 9 Every 48.2 minutes
Iker Casillas 1620 0 0 N/A
Sergio Ramos 1613 2 0 Every 806.5 minutes
Karim Benzema 1564 13 8 Every 74.48 minutes
Marcelo 1527 1 5 Every 254.5 minutes
Gareth Bale 1429 7 5 Every 119.08 minutes
Luka Modric 1413 1 3 Every 353.25 minutes
Isco 1268 2 8 Every 126.8 minutes
Pepe 1260 1 3 Every 315 minutes
Dani Carvajal 1089 0 1 Every 1089 minutes
Raphael Varane 966 2 0 Every 483 minutes
Álvaro Arbeloa 895 0 1 Every 895 minutes
Asier Illarramendi 542 0 0 N/A
Nacho 502 0 0 N/A
Fabio Coentrao 435 0 0 N/A
Javier Hernández 421 4 2 Every 70.16 minutes
Keylor Navas 360 0 0 N/A
Sami Khedira 217 0 0 N/A
*Xabi Alonso 180 0 0 N/A
Álvaro Medrán 125 0 0 N/A
Fernando Pacheco 90 0 0 N/A
Diego Llorente 45 0 0 N/A
Jesé Rodríguez 34 1 0 Every 34 minutes
Javier Munoz 28 0 0 N/A
Raúl de Tomás 14 0 0 N/A
*Ángel Di María 12 0 0 N/A
Own Goal In Favour of Real Madrid - 2 0 Every 1035 minutes

*No longer with the squad.

Going by the data we can see that Carlo Ancelotti is doing a great job with the rotation of the defence but in contrast has been very conservative with his rotations for the midfield and forward positions. I personally believe that Illarramendi, Chicharito, Khedira and Navas are the four players who are not seeing enough minutes with the first team. We know why this is. It's because the current players who are playing the most minutes are playing extremely well and to a very high standard. Therefore it is hard for these other players to get their names in the starting XI on the team sheet. However, if Ancelotti continues to be stubborn in his approach to rotations and his timing of substitutions then throughout the season it will become increasingly likely that some of these Real Madrid players will encounter fatigue and even injury. It is a concern that can easily be remedied.

Another number of note - as if it's not already obvious - is the devastating offensive impact that Cristiano Ronaldo has. He is scoring or assisting a goal every 48.2 minutes played this season. Incredible. Karim Benzema & Javier Hernández are also doing an excellent job scoring or assisting every 74.48 and 70.16 minutes played respectively. I'm sure this is a big part of the reason why Real Madrid are currently scoring on average over 1.23 goals per game more than any other club across Europe's top 5 leagues. Los Blancos are in relentless form in front of goal.

Like many have pointed out, the statistics show that it is Toni Kroos & James Rodríguez who have played the most minutes for Real Madrid this season out of a possible 2070. Interestingly though, Iker Casillas, Sergio Ramos & Karim Benzema have all played nearly as many minutes as Kroos & James. Four of those five players play in a central position from the sides of the pitch and even James has played most of his games in midfield rather than on the wings. Perhaps this indicates that consistently keeping the spine of the team together can help with putting together record-breaking winning streaks. Maybe that would be Carlo's response to me people who believe he should be rotating more often. To echo the great man himself, I think it's a question of balance. It is possible for one to rotate without compromising the chemistry of the team.

With Marcelo playing so well at the moment, it will be interesting to see how Fabio Coentrao fits back into the mould. Because before his injury, he was arguably the No.1 choice at left-back. Despite already playing 1413 minutes, Luka Modric probably would have played even more had it not been for his injury during the FIFA's latest international break; which once again raises questions about the current rotation policy. Gareth Bale, Sami Khedira and Raphael Varane are some of the other players to have suffered minor injuries so far this season. Speaking of injuries, the current holder within the squad for the least minutes played per goal scored or created currently belongs to the recently returned Jesé Rodríguez! Although I suspect that particular mantle will soon return to the incumbent Ballon d'Or winner...

Finally, I'd like to raise attention to just how fantastically well James and Kroos have adapted to life in Madrid in such little time. It's reminiscent of Gareth Bale's superb adaptation last season. One may shrug and think that quality players who cost x-amount of money shouldn't need much time to adapt to a new league, environment and culture but history shows us that's not necessarily always the case. Also, Pepe currently has 3 assists for the season and I believe he managed to make 5 assists last season which I think is very commendable for a central defender whose technical ability has often been overlooked. In fact, looking at the table above it is very impressive to see that there are goals coming from literally every outfield position on the pitch. Perhaps the only thing Madridistas need now is for San Iker to turn into Rogério Ceni.

Anyway, what do you the readers think of these numbers? Be sure to sound off in the comments section below.

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