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Open Thread: March 20, 2021

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Our Saturday issue of the Daily Merengue!

Real Madrid v RC Celta - La Liga Santander Photo by Berengui/DeFodi Images via Getty Images

The Open Thread/Daily Merengue is a place where you can discuss anything and everything related to football. Feel free to discuss the topics presented here, or start your very own discussions! The Open thread will be posted every day by one of the mods: Valyrian Steel, Felipejack, YoSnail, Ezek Ix or NeRObutBlanco.

It’s Matchday!

Real Madrid have already traveled to Vigo, Galicia to play Saturday Celta at the Balaídos (11:15 EST / 16:15 CET). Los Blancos look to make it three straight LaLiga wins.

The top of the table is tight and every point is critical. Now level on matches played with Atletico Madrid, Real Madrid are 6 points below the leaders.

Lucas Navarrete has a piece with the squad chosen for this match.

Jose C. Perez has written a detailed match preview, pinpointing among other things how Real Madrid’s pressing tactics were effective against Celta’s characteristic formation on the build up.

Zidane press conference after Friday’s training

We mustn’t forget last week. In fact, the opposite is true. We’re happy, but we’ve got another game and we want to continue doing well as a team. We’re going day by day. We’ve recovered from the last game and now we have a demanding match in Vigo, against a side that knows how to play very good football. I’m focused on that game. I’m not going to speak about the rest.

It’s the same every year. In the final stretch, March and April, everything is at stake. I don’t pay attention to those things. I just focus on day to day life, which is what drives us. The rest is philosophy. We want to keep working hard and to give everything because we’re still alive in two competitions. We’re only focused on what is now and we have to be well prepared for what lies in store for us.

Modrić named Champions League player of the week

Congratulations to the great Croatian midfield maestro!

Cristiano Ronaldo named Serie A player of the year

A must-read article about Real Madrid’s purchasing capability

Kristofer McCormack in his recent article makes a sobering point — that Real Madrid supporters should carefully consider their assumptions about the club’s buying power this next offseason. Unlike clubs that are financially backed by sovereign wealth funds, our club is structured ultimately as a socio-owned, democratic organization with limitations on the amount of debt it can incur under Spanish law. The pandemic has made the possibility of massive expenditures on star players difficult due to the loss of revenue from ticket sales.

Though the papers are certainly the main culprit when it comes to fueling transfer rumors’, they aren’t alone in the belief that Real Madrid are going to spend this summer. Too many fans not only believe Los Blancos have the money to spare, but are strongly of the opinion that Perez and his board are obligated to financially support Zinedine Zidane this summer. This belief is born out of fundamental misunderstandings about where Real Madrid get their money from.

Jose Felix Diaz of MARCA makes the point that while Real Madrid may not be able to offer the absurd sums of money that Manchester City or PSG can, Real Madrid understands that where players chose to play is on occasion more about the money.

Money is usually a decisive factor when it comes to transfer deals and it’s rare for a player to turn down more money elsewhere, but it does happen.

Real Madrid are hoping that an understanding and desire to play for a certain club could help a player to decide to sign for them, as they know that both Erling Haaland and Kylian Mbappe will have better financial offers from elsewhere.

Battling against clubs accused of financial doping makes it almost impossible to provide a better offer, but they know they have the emotional edge.

Toni Kroos is tops in LaLiga for a key statistic

(HT: Valyrian steel)