Sunday, 27 May 2018

What do Real Madrid have that Barcelona don't?

Zinedine Zidane
Zinedine Zidane
In the Messi era, after the 'Pep Team,' Real Madrid once again reigns in Europe. 

Four out of five. 

Five years to win the same amount of trophies as Leo's Barcelona in 15 years. 

That was pointed out by former Blaugrana Marc Crosas recently, and in the midst of a full Los Blancos celebration, Puyol joined that reflection. 

With surely the best player in history in their team, Madrid are walking through Europe, so what do they have that Barcelona doesn't?

I can think of a fundamental virtue to win especially in short tournaments: the competitive gene. 

It doesn't occur to me, not at all, to recall seeing Madrid suffer the debacle of Rome or the disaster of Turin. 

And the historic 'chorreo' of Liverpool was from another time. 

That gene seems to have bypassed Barcelona. 

When the Catalans have won a Champions League it has been because their superiority over the rivals has been tremendous. 

But even being superior, there have been issues and times where they've not won.

Madrid also have Sergio Ramos. 

A goblin or a flower or whatever you want to call him.

 A player whose team can win European finals thanks to his interventions, particularly in the 93rd minute. 

At Barcelona, I only remember the 'Iniestazo' which was the result of an absolute dominance over Chelsea in their area.

It's worth remembering too, that Madrid also have incredible squad depth. 

In Lisbon it was Isco and Di Maria who revolutionised the match, and this time it was Bale who scored an incredible overhead kick. 

Barcelona, Puyol already noted, have players like Suarez and Messi, but they can't rest except for anecdotal absences. 

Take a look at the games that Cristiano Ronaldo has rested in this year by contrast.

To get anywhere near winning the European final, Barcelona need its best version, a Messi and a team completely in tune. 

Everything has to be just right. Madrid doesn't even need half of its team to play at their maximum, and they can still raise the trophy.

It's enough just to be Madrid. Luck? Chance? I don't think so.


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