Férland Mendy’s awesome performance at Real Madrid should motivate Marcelo

With Férland Mendy, Real Madrid have let in just 8 goals in 19 games (0.42 goals per game). With Marcelo, the team has conceded 15 goals in 15 games.

One of Zinedine Zidane’s first requests to rebuild the squad on his return was the signing of a left-back. The Madrid coach could see that Marcelo needed something to motivate him and get him back to his best.

Marcelo had been in decline since the departure of Zidane and also his close friend CristianoLopetegui and Solari managed to mask the left-back’s drop in form by bringing in Castilla player Sergio Reguilón, who made 22 appearances with the first team, 14 of them in LaLiga either as an alternative to Marcelo or covering for the Brazilian when he was out injured.

Zidane’s return changed the situation completely. Regui went out on loan to Sevilla to gain experience and Férland Mendy was signed from Olympique Lyon in June last year – specifically to compete with Marcelo for the left-back position.

Férland Mendy and Marcelo 2

After overcoming a series of niggling muscular injuries which kept him out of the team at the start of the season, little by little Mendy is making the left-back slot his own. Zidane has used him whenever the team has faced right wingers who have blistering pace – such as Villarreal’s Samuel Chukwueze  or Sevilla’s Jesús Navas. With the French full-back, Madrid have conceded just eight goals in 19 games (in all competitions), which is an average of 0.42 goals per game.

With Marcelo however, the average more than doubles – he has played 15 games so far this season, in which the team has conceded 15 goals… The Brazilian has also had three spells in the sickbay this season for various muscular injuries which has been an additional  handicap.

It’s the same story in one-on-one battles with opposing players – Mendy comes out on top an average of 60.56%, while Marcelo averages 52.17%. As a unit, Madrid’s four-man back four of CarvajalVaraneRamos and Mendy have played a total of nine games – from which the team has own six and drawn three; that defence has kept a clean sheet in six games (66.66%) while the team has scored 17 goals.

Férland Mendy

With Marcelo in Mendy‘s place in the same defence, Madrid have played three games with two wins and a draw, scoring nine goals (an average of three per game) and let in three (an average of a goal per game).

It was Mendy who sent over a cross for Benzema’s winner in the derby against Atlético and he followed that up with a solid defensive display in Saturday’s game against Osasuna.

For ZidaneMendy‘s arrival has been a blessing. He only had positive things to say about the young defender in his press conference ahead of the derby: “He’s settled in really well. He’s someone who wants to learn and improve. He is a very competitive player, who enjoys battles with rival forwards and he has the hunger to win. He wants to show that the club made the right decision in signing him,” Zizou said, before adding that there is some room for improvement: “He needs to continue improving his Spanish…” With Marcelo not getting any younger, at least Madrid have a reliable alternative in Mendy…

Marcelo talks about C. Ronaldo’s secrets

 

Marcelo.jpg

Barely two days after Cristiano Ronaldo’s exit from the the Santiago Bernabeu was made public, his teammate and very close friend Marcelo says there are tales to tell, only when the time is ripe.

‘No one believed you’d leave at this time, Cris! It happened so soon…,’ Marcelo shared in an Instagram post with a picture of both footballers clutching each other’s shoulder in front of photographers.

View this post on Instagram

Quem diria hein Cris!!! É mano chegou a hora de dizer até logo… Te juro q nao imaginava que esse dia chegaria! Mas nada nessa vida é pra sempre, espero q vc seja muito feliz na sua nova caminhada. Foram quase 10 anos do teu lado, 10 anos de alegria, bom futebol, vitorias, derrotas e momentos maravilhosos! Aprendi muito com vc, sua dedicação é a coisa mais bizarra q eu vi em um atleta. Tudo de bom pra vc e sua linda familia! Vou sentir saudades das nossas resenhas antes dos jogos quando vc acertava o resultados e antes das finais nos tranquilizava com tua experiência e o carinho com os mais jovens! Tenho orgulho de ter jogado contigo nao por que VOCE SEJA O MAIOR JOGADOR DA P#RR% TODA e sim pela pessoa q você é!!! quando eu parar de jogar vou sentar no bar tomar uma cerveja e vou contar vaaarias historias e mostrar todas as nossas fotos 😂 Ja ja tamo junto de novo 😉❤️ #M12 🙌🏾

A post shared by Marcelo Vieira Jr. (@marcelotwelve) on

‘I swear I did not imagine that day would come! But nothing in this life is forever,’ the left-back continued.

‘I wish you the best at your new club…Over ten years have passed since we stood by each other’s side in victory and defeat, sharing memorable moments and learning from the “the best.”’

‘Almost everything I learned from you, your athletic nature was amazing…I’ll miss our pep talks before games, when you got results on the pitch, and particularly before the Champions League finals when you reassured us of victory from experience.

‘I’m so grateful for everything you gave to football, Real Madrid, and many aspiring young footballer all over the world. I am very proud to have stood by your side all these years,’ the Brazilian added. ‘Saying goodbye, #M12.’

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Marcelo, 30, envisaged and described a perfect scene where the best tales about Ronaldo would be told – a bar.

His words: ‘When I retire from football, I will sit at the bar to have a beer and tell many stories about him [C. Ronaldo]…Only then will I show off all our pictures.’

Italian champions Juventus will unveil their new signing on Monday. However, a report from Marca confirms the Portugal international footballer will not play against the Old Lady during their upcoming summer friendly.

Real Madrid and Juve will meet at FedEx Field, home ground of the Washington Redskins, on 5 August.

Juventus will kick off their summer tour of the U.S. with a game against Bayern Munich on 26 July, Benfica on 28 and MLS XI on 2 August.

Having played at the 2018 World Cup, Ronaldo will not engage in club training until the end of July and five days are not enough for him to play competitive football. Moreover, Juventus have better ideas on his usefulness and will not want to risk the star player.

Marcelo extends Contract with Real Madrid

Real Madrid has confirmed it extended contract with veteran left-back Marcelo until June 2022.

The Brazil international footballer had his previous contract expiry date as 2020.

Los Blancos confirmed the player’s official contract signing ritual will go live on Thursday.

Marcelo was only 18 years old when he arrived the Santiago Bernabeu in 2007 and he has matured into one of the most respectable players. With 415 matches and counting, the left-footed star is now Madrid’s vice-captain.

His current deal offers him a chance to break the record set by his compatriot and predecessor Roberto Carlos, who made as many as 527 appearances for Madrid.

The 29-year-old has won 17 titles with Real Madrid, including 4 La Liga trophies and 3 Champions League crowns.

In the build-up to their match against Real Sociedad, Zinedine Zidane’s team were seventh on the league table after three matches.

The Champions League title defenders opened up their 2017-18 campaign with a comfortable 3-0 victory over APOEL in Group H on Wednesday night at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu in Madrid.

Zidane, Marcelo and Ramos react to the Cristiano Ronaldo’s red card

Cristiano Ronaldo came off the bench to put Real Madrid 2-1 ahead of their arch-rivals Barcelona in their first leg of the Spanish Super Cup at Camp Nou on Sunday, but his unfortunate red card sparked mixed reactions from teammates Sergio Ramos and Marcelo.

Ronaldo, 32, scored a jaw-dropping goal and proceeded with his sassy celebration against Lionel Messi’s equalizer.

The famous No. 7 took off his shirt and flexed his muscles before putting the jersey on display near the red-faced home crowd to mock Messi’s last season celebration at the Santiago Bernabeu after he [Messi] scored to cancel Gerard Pigue’s own goal.

Marcelo, who was inches away from the Portuguese, scratched his head in apparent disapproval.

CR7’s decision to go shirtless during Sunday’s Supercopa de Espana  attracted a yellow card from referee Ricardo de Burgos Bengoetxea.

Barely two minutes from the first incident, Ronaldo got caught in a questionable dive which was complicated when he shoved the officiating referee from behind and got a second yellow card.

The match ended 3-1 in favor of Madrid but the 4-time Ballon d’Or winner is likely to face a longtime ban for his actions.

Ronaldo will miss Wednesday’s second leg El Clasico and may get a lengthy ban from the football governing body.

Messi equalized with a spot-kick and Asension fired 10-man Madrid to victory.

Marcelo says Cristiano is “f**ked” for getting involved with the referee.

“It’s a pity. What are we going to do?” said the left-footed Brazilian footballer.

“I haven’t talked about referees for a long time, but what has happened has happened. I have just been asked about it but I have not seen it so I cannot comment.”

Coach Zinedine Zidane expressed excitement at the scoreline but said he’s unhappy with Ronaldo’s dismissal.

“We played a great game but I am annoyed by Cristiano’s sending-off,” said the Frenchman.

“Perhaps it wasn’t a penalty but the red card is a little harsh. We can’t change it, but we’ll try and make sure he plays on Wednesday.

“With 10 men we fought and we believed in the victory right to the end,” Zidane added. “This, though, was only one game and now there is the return leg.

“We are happy with the result, but the tie is not decided and we have to play on Wednesday. We’ll enjoy tonight and then from tomorrow we’ll start working towards Wednesday.”

“As always, I’m not going to get involved in discussing the work of the referee,” the Frenchman told reporters.

Team captain Sergio Ramos said his teammate was under pressure from Barca defender Samuel Umtiti, and backed Ronaldo’s fall as a forced dive from body contact.

“He was a long way from me, I think it was a moment of play that unbalanced him and he didn’t feign anything,” he argued.

“It could be possible to appeal because it left us without a really important player for 10 minutes. We should think it over a little more.”

Marcelo Urges Real Madrid To Forget Winning 2015/2016 CL Trophy.

Marcelo has urged his Real Madrid teammates to forget past glories and forge ahead with a new goal of winning more trophies in domestic and international competitions.

Image: Marcelo

Winning the 2015/2016 Champions League trophy should arouse a desire for more, rather than be a distraction, the Brazilian footballer adds.

Madrid are already on a pre-season tour in Canada where Marcelo appeared at a press conference, saying that future objectives have to be more important than past successes.

“We’ve won the Champions League, but when we arrived here we already had in mind that we have to work and forget what happened because if we kept that in our heads it would be useless,” the defender explained, according to reports from AS.

The 28-year-old continued: “Since I came to Madrid I’ve been taught to fight for the team, to defend this badge and to do that every season.

“I hope to continue here for many years and give the maximum, leaving everything on the pitch to help Madrid.

“The squad is good, but it’s not up to me to decide [if anyone signs]. I see the squad very well, there are players who are in great shape and those who aren’t yet.

“We have the UEFA Super Cup in our heads, we’re working and it costs us, and we are thinking of the Super Cup.

“The best squad I’ve been in? The squad that wins is the best one, always. I’ve been through a lot in Madrid and had some years without winning trophies. It’s hard to say which is best because there have been quality players. It’s hard to say if it’s the best or the second best. Every year Madrid tries to do everything possible to give the fans trophies.”

Image: Marcelo

“[About Alvaro Morata who just returned to Madrid after 2 years at Juventus] I know Morata has always been a great player, he was when he was a young player and now he has a lot of experience and will help us a lot.”

“[On Nacho who has been speculated to be on his way out of Los Blancos] I’ve watched Nacho since he was in Real Madrid Castilla. I like him a lot and he brings a lot to the team. Of course, you always want to play but personally, as his friend, I want him to stay. The team loves him very much, and he brings a lot to every training session.

“[Asked of his retirement plans and playing in the MLS] MLS? If Madrid don’t want me…I want to stay at Madrid, but the League in America is very nice. It’s growing and will get even bigger. I want to continue my life in Madrid.”