Barcelona dropped points in the 14th game week of La Liga as only one of the Madrid side seemed to take advantage of that. Meanwhile, Valencia took their first knock of the season by the hands of Getafe. Below are some points we have learned from this matchday.
1. From managerial tactics to the attacking trio, Real Madrid needs a major overhaul.
As the game went on at San Mames, we saw another disappointing result as the game ended in a goalless draw. Although Karim Benzema had some chances in the early game to get on the score sheet, he didn’t manage to put any behind the net, and with Bale’s injury session and Ronaldo’s decline, it has been proved that a good forward with a clinical finish is now a necessity for Real and Zidane should look to his attacking options in upcoming windows after messing up in the previous one. Moreover, it has been proved that 4-4-2 formation doesn’t suit Real’s style of play because Ronaldo and Benzema can’t tear through the opposition’s defence, so Zidane should stick to 4-3-3 again to make fast counters and choose the right players who won’t slow down the system. With being 8 points behind Barcelona, the league can go anywhere but Real will have to change their ways to get back into the race.
2. Barcelona is on top, but Valverde’s hard time might be getting started
Although Real couldn’t seem to take advantage of it, Barcelona has drawn their second consecutive game, this time against Celta who have lost more times this season than they have won. Leo Messi and Luis Suarez got on the score sheet but defence and midfield is their problem number one, with Iniesta and Pique out of form, and Umtiti and Mascherano getting injured. Moreover, they don’t have that good of a bench to actually fill these gaps or replace the players. It might be safe to say that Barca will start to struggle if either of Iniesta or Messi are subtracted somehow because Barcelona relies on these two in their every game. And With El Classico coming on, it seems to be a huge challenge for Ernesto Valverde to keep Barcelona’s lead in the table and get the most out of his players.
3. Defensive Simeone becoming Offensive Simeone
Diego Simeone is known for being a defensive manager but also is considered as a heavenly figure among Atletico fans because of the way he transformed the club. Recently he was branded for being way too much defensive and parking the bus and was accused of being behind the slacking runs of Atleti in La Liga. Which was true in its own way as in his tactics, from defenders to forwards, everybody had to play a defensive role. But lately, it has been observed that Atletico is getting out of their defensive shell finally and finally playing a game full of attack, with utilising the actual ability of Griezmann, Correa, Gameiro and Saul. In the game against Sociedad, it was a narrow win but a much more attacking masterclass from Atletico. Filipe Luis and Griezmann scored the late goals with Saul being involved in both goals. Although it is working fine for Atletico, one thing Simeone should look to is giving more playtime to Carrasco, or even make him a starter because he is a phenomenal player and even proved himself in the game against Sociedad, giving Atleti an upper hand in the wings.
4. Valencia. A rising power or just a half season wonder?
It has been observed in La Liga for years that every year, one new team along with Real, Barca and Atletico rises and then goes back into the decline. Last year it was Sevilla. This year it’s Valencia. The only difference with Valencia is that there was a mass change at the club, from management to coaches to players, there was a mass overhaul. And under the new circumstances, the club has done so well, with winning 9 and drawing 4 in their first 13 La Liga games, they became a new fear factor in La Liga as they didn’t lose against any top side of La Liga. But in this gameweek, they finally lost their first game of the season against the newly promoted team Getafe. Although football is a game with ups and downs in it, with mighty falling to mere powers often, but does thislosse mean that Valencia have reached their peak and now are returning like every La Liga team? Only the coming gameweeks will tell as they face Celta Vigo who defied Barcelona at Camp Nou
With keeping all the things in mind, we can say that league can go anywhere now if the teams keep on giving results like these every gameweek. And fans will witness some real drama every weekend.