Bienvenido al Juninho Edition de The Daily Merengue — a place where you can feel free to discuss all things football. Do not be alarmed by the overt RMCF bias. It’s in the name!
Shoutout to the moderators who do a fantastic job, Valyrian Steel, KungFuZizou, NeRObutBlanco, Felipejack, and LONG LIVE Juninho.
The Champions: Match Day in Berlin
It’s another Champions League Night! Los Blancos have already sealed their qualification for the Round 16, so today’s game is an opportunity to continue cardio, fix mistakes, and build more momentum for the remainder of the season.
Of course, you need to watch Real Madrid. But additionally there are some exciting last minute qualification matches for the likes of Group A (Man U, Galatasaray, Copenhagen), the Top of Group D (Sociedad, Inter), and Sevilla’s quest to fall into the Europa!
Rotations Rotations Rotations
Rumor is that today’s match will be an opportunity to rotate a thin Real Madrid squad. Will the likes of Nico Paz make an appearance? Maybe...but also maybe not haha
Expected XI vs Union Berlin. pic.twitter.com/57VeRsTxqU— Madrid Xtra (@MadridXtra) December 12, 2023
️ Carlo Ancelotti: "The players are not tired. There is no problem. The idea is not to rotate just because. Only if there is a risk." pic.twitter.com/h6FhGOJBHg— Managing Madrid (@managingmadrid) December 11, 2023
Ancelotti confirms Kepa will reclaim his place, for now.— Kiyan Sobhani (@KiyanSo) December 11, 2023
"Kepa will play. Fair or unfair is something I don't think about. Lunin has had the opportunity and has shown that he is a reliable goalkeeper. We are very happy."
Also went on to say that Kepa has already proven himself
Do You Agree With Carlo’s Statement re Rotations?
This poll is closed
Should Kepa return as the STARTING Madrid GK?
This poll is closed
Yes — Kepa has performed well thus far and shouldn’t lose his place due to injury
No — Lunin has performed just as equally as Kepa if not better.
A Brief Disagreement With Carlo
In yesterday’s presser Carlo had the following quotes about the Real Madrid’s legends:
️ Carlo Ancelotti: "I'm not a legend, just a coach. The legends are the players" pic.twitter.com/9pjcjTP9Db— Managing Madrid (@managingmadrid) December 11, 2023
Carlo Ancelotti: "The legends of this club decide what they want to do. Our legends are Kroos, Modrić and Nacho. The club has such a high respect for these players that they have earned the right to decide about their future [if they want to renew or not]." pic.twitter.com/IBAQd65WaI— Madrid Xtra (@MadridXtra) December 11, 2023
First, I understand his humility but Carlo is clearly a Real Madrid legendary coach. I’d rank him higher than most tbh and the accolades speak for themselves.
Second, and I don’t mean for this to sound harsh, but I don’t believe any Real Madrid player “earns the right to decide their future” with the club. That decision and responsibility must always be the club’s. Whether we as fans want to accept it or not, most players a) have difficulty accepting that their bodies are failing or that they’re no longer competing at their prime, and b) make decisions based on what is personally best for the player rather than the club. There is nothing wrong about these decision habits as they’re perfectly rational.
So extending this train of thought, in my opinion, it may be time for the club to move on from these legends similar to the subtly enforced retirement of Marcelo and distinctly different from the fall from grace of Pique / Alba. It may be beneficial to allow a younger fresher mind to replace Nacho’s utility. It may be necessary to look away from Modric’s tired legs. It may even be appropriate to find other means to stylistically play without requiring Toni Kroos’ deliberate and methodical accuracy. The new era appears to be here but will the club seize it?