From the Copa del Rey loss against Barcelona to the Champions League humiliation against Ajax, Real Madrid’s season effectively ended over just a six day span last week. The three straight losses at the Santiago Bernabeu knocked them out of both cup competitions and left them a virtually unassailable twelve points behind Barcelona in the league. Madrid had begun a mini resurgence in the opening weeks of 2019, but their latest results mean that the Club World Cup is now certain to be their only trophy of the season.
For the Real Madrid President, Florentino Perez, one positive from these setbacks is that they may give him the authority to completely overhaul the team as he wishes. While the warning signs were evident throughout last season, a third consecutive Champions League title made it difficult to justify making too many changes in the squad. The extraordinary success also gave influential figures in the dressing room like Sergio Ramos the leverage to resist the President’s demands. This was most evident when Antonio Conte seemed certain to take over from Lopetegui in the fall only for Ramos to publicly speak out against him on behalf of the players.
With the players now having lost some of that authority after the latest debacles, that opens the way for Florentino to bring in a more authoritative manager like Jose Mourinho for next season. Mourinho is unpopular with some of the players and staff at the club from his last tenure, but Madrid fans have been singing his name of late and he is usually a manager that thrives when taking over a team that needs a lift.
As for the squad itself, Real Madrid’s low spending over recent transfer windows will give Perez the chance to rebuild an aging team in desperate need of reinforcements. Bale’s match winning display against Liverpool and the suggestion that Ronaldo had been holding him back spared him last summer, but the Welshman will surely leave the club this summer. Along with brining at least one big name attacker, the age and recent decline of key players in midfield and defense may also force them into the market for players in those positions.
During his many years as President of Real Madrid, Perez has always sought to be in control of the club’s affairs, which has often provoked problems between him and certain players or managers. The failure of those players on the pitch last season may at least give him the leverage to justify the total revamp and massive spending he has been waiting to do.