Real Madrid, with their seasoned players, is in an excellent position for most portion of the season. The talents that guided Real Madrid to three (or four) Champions League titles are still very effective and among the greatest in the world in their respective positions. Karim Benzema was a contender for the Ballon d’Or in 2021. Modric, Casemiro, and Toni Kroos are still among the greatest midfielders in the world – if not the best – and constitute one of the most dangerous attacking combinations in the world.
And the players who are no longer effective at all — Gareth Bale, Marcelo, and Isco – will depart the club as free agents this summer, with no discomfort or bad blood between the two sides. They may all either go closer to retirement (Bale and Marcelo) or attempt to resurrect their careers in a new environment (Isco).
Even though there is one player who was world-class during the three-peat period and has continued to be successful to this day, there are real questions about how much the club can depend on him in the future.
Dani Carvajal, the right-back, is the one in question. And the 2021-2022 season has served as a microcosm of all that has contributed to his fragile position as he prepares to enter what is expected to be a busy summer transfer window in 2022.
Dani Carvajal is still a world-class right back, but Real Madrid fans seldom get to see him in action.
Carvajal has always been a source of injury worry, but at the age of 30, the injuries are beginning to pile up predictably. Carvajal has made just 13 starts so far in the 2021-2022 season, after a season in which he appeared in only 15 games throughout La Liga and the Champions League.
Again, he has shown world-class performances at times. But he has also been disappointing in a handful of crucial games, such as the meeting against Sevilla.
Real Madrid will make it a priority of signing two of the finest attackers in the world this summer. Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland are the top main targets during the next transfer window. However, they are also considering making a move at the right-back position. Because of Carvajal’s injuries over the previous two seasons, Lucas Vazquez has been forced to play far too many minutes at right-back. He is having no backup at right-back for a third consecutive season is a huge concern.
There have been rumblings that Alvaro Odriozola is on his way back to Fiorentina. This is said to be at Carlo Ancelotti’s request. But he might potentially decide to remain at the club indefinitely. Odriozola has never shown that he is talented enough to play for Real Madrid. Fiorentina, on the other hand, is more on his level.
This summer, Real Madrid might recruit a young Right-Back
Los Blancos, on the other hand, have several possibilities at right back. Young ones, as well. No, put aside your Achraf Hakimi fantasies for a while. Real Madrid, on the other hand, could recruit his countryman Noussair Mazraoui on a free transfer. Pedro Porro would be an excellent acquisition for them if they are looking for a higher-end alternative. He has the potential to fill the role for the next decade.
Carvajal might be replaced if Real Madrid decides to take their right-back position seriously. They need to sign a young player who is worthy of their attention. The 30-year-old might find himself out of the starting XI sooner than you think if he continues to be restricted by injury.
It all depends on who is accessible and who is willing to sign for Real Madrid. Carvajal’s future as a regular starter is in severe question, and Madridistas must consider this. If we are being really honest, Carvajal has not been a consistent starter over the last two seasons, which is why Vazquez’s position at right-back is so troubling. He is meant to be an emergency option, not the one who has received the lion’s share of minutes for months.
So, what needs to be done?
Carvajal is much too talented to be sent abroad. Given the injuries and form problems, he is unlikely to be as appealing a transfer target as he once was. He is more important to Real Madrid than he is to any other club. This is because he can perform very well in crucial games for this squad. His full might makes him a force to be reckoned with. I don’t see how anybody could argue with it.
However, it is difficult to argue with the reality that he is not someone Real can depend on every week. This reality Los Blancos must confront as a club is a hard one to accept. Choosing what to do with Carvajal is not an easy option to make. He is not going to be sold. He has no intention of leaving.
But should he still go ahead and start? What type of competition does the right back need to be pumped with? Carvajal’s position is no longer untouchable, even though his future is almost certainly set in Madrid. Thus, Real finds himself in an unusual situation. They still place a high value on Carvajal, but they must take a more aggressive approach to deal with his situation.