Pro-Real Madrid newspapers AS and Marca have explained how Carlo Ancelotti’s side has improved since Angel Di Maria left to join Manchester United.
There were big fears in the Spanish press over how Real were going to cope due to the £60 million deal, which took the Argentine to Manchester but the development of key players and the impact of new players has helped fill the void.
“James and Isco are exquisite players, whose natural habitat is the playmaker’s role. They prefer to walk and to let the other players run,” reports AS.
“Isco came to Madrid and liked it, but he lacked deployment and he was dropped and lost his first-team place to Di María, who had that ability to run in spades. James has arrived now and did not take long to realise that in Madrid, more is required. Run, go, return, and at the same time, continue playing exquisitely.”
Di Maria’s status as one of the quickest and most skilful players in the team was always going to be difficult to replace but James Rodriguez showed good maturity and played sensibly in Real’s Clasico win against Barcelona over the weekend.
Barca are top of the table on goal difference and their impressive start to the season created the very realistic possibility and idea that they could dominate a Real Madrid side without Di Maria present.
However, James Rodriguez ran the attacking show against a very talented opponent and has also been praised by Marca for the way he’s played following the Di Maria sale and his arrival.
“James's signing proved particularly controversial, both because of his price tag and the subsequent offloading of Ángel di Maria, the player he was meant to be competing with,” reports Marca.
“The Colombian is showing some all-round skills, however, that have helped him to adapt to this new in-field position, indispensable for achieving the now-familiar balance that has become the Italian coach's tactical mantra.”
Di Maria has moved on and has become arguably Manchester United’s best attacking player while Real have shown an efficiency in attack so far this season, which has helped compensate for his loss.
As far as each party is concerned, long may it continue.