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Open Thread: March 25, 2021

Our Thursday issue of the Daily Merengue!

Photo by Jonathan Moscrop/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.

Results from the International Break:

As reported by Jose C. Perez, Raphäel Varane and France began their road to the 2022 World Cup with a match against Ukraine that ended in a bittersweet 1-1. The French controlled the game almost the entire time and had more and better chances (19 shots vs Ukraine’s 3), but they couldn’t capitalize on them. Ferland Mendy is in the French squad but was not listed in the match-day squad for this Wednesday game. This seems to be the case with Lunin as well.

Luka Modric becomes Croatia’s most capped player with 134 appearances and equaling Darijo Srna in the record books. The midfield maestro couldn’t prevent his side from slumping to defeat however against Slovenia. Gareth Bale managed to record an assist in Wales’s 3-1 loss to Belgium while Jovic played only 8 minutes in Serbia’s 3-2 victory over Ireland.

There was concern in the Norwegian camp meanwhile as Martin Odegaard was subbed off at halftime against Gibraltar due to an apparent ankle injury. There’s no update as of yet as to how serious it is. If serious enough, his loan with Arsenal would reportedly end short and he would return to Madrid for rehab. Norway meanwhile won 3-0.

So what does Castilla have to do to make it to the second tier of Spanish football?

The calendar for the second phase of Real Madrid Castilla’s league season, which kicks off on the weekend of 3-4 April, has been announced. Raúl charges are set to meet three sides from Sub-group B of Group 5 (Badajoz, Extremadura and Talavera) home and away in the team’s quest to make the playoffs for promotion to the second tier.

  • M1 - 3-4 April - M4 - 24-25 April - Real Madrid Castilla v Extremadura
  • M2 - 10-11 April - M5 - 1-2 May - Badajoz v Real Madrid Castilla
  • M3 - 17-18 April - M6 - 8-9 May - Real Madrid Castilla v Talavera de la Reina

As reported by Kristofer McCormack the top three finishers in the group are assured of a place in the playoffs as well as the best 4th place finish across the five groups. With just six games, there is little margin for error and Castilla have been handed a very tough draw.

Could Cristiano Ronaldo actually return? Pros and cons!!

Depending on who you want to believe, ever since Juventus were knocked out of the Champions League, Cristiano Ronaldo has been linked with a return to Real Madrid with his agent Mendes apparently offering the player to Florentino. Unlikely as this seems here are some pros and cons per Marca.


  • Ronaldo guarantees goals from day 1
  • His ambition to win is undiminished
  • Huge marketing value
  • Zidane knows how to use him
  • The romantic effect


  • He would be a signing with little long-term value
  • His arrival would prevent the signing of other stars
  • His salary is astronomical

Taking the above into consideration please answer the poll question below. Feel free to explain your reasoning in the comments as well.


So Madridistas would you be in favor of our Legend returning?

This poll is closed

  • 34%
    (134 votes)
  • 65%
    (254 votes)
388 votes total Vote Now

ICYMI: Managing Madrid Podcast: Debunking all of your Martin Odegaard takes and More.

In this podcast Kiyan Sobhani and Matt Wiltse discuss everything from debunking all the anti-Ø arguments: “impatient, not good enough, etc” to Borja Mayoral vs Shakhtar Donetsk. Give it a listen.

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