Real Madrid

Real Madrid’s Portuguese forward Cristiano Ronaldo, Real Madrid’s Costa Rican goalkeeper Keylor Navas and Real Madrid’s Spanish defender Nacho Fernandez react during the Spanish League ‘Clasico’ football match Real Madrid CF vs FC Barcelona at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid on December 23, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / OSCAR DEL POZO (Photo credit should read OSCAR DEL POZO/AFP/Getty Images)

Well, this is awkward. Let’s not kid ourselves. Coming off the transfer window and the Spanish Super Cup, we all thought this was the beginning of a period of dominance for Real Madrid.

Best Player – Isco

In a season where Marcelo, Modric, Kroos, Ronaldo and Benzema have all endured what can only be generously defined as a ‘slump’ the Spanish maestro, Isco, is one of the few Madrid players who can hold his head high while looking at his teammates in disappointment.

Quiet Achiever – No One

Due to the fact so many Madrid players are under-performing, it’s hard to pick a player who’s achieved quietly. Anyone who has played well sticks out like a sore thumb.

Worst Player – Take your pick. Ronaldo, Benzema, Marcelo, Ramos, Modric have all struggled.

Manager – Zinedine Zidane

Zidane is right in the middle of his most testing period of his Real Madrid career. The fabled BBC strike force is on its last legs and reliable performers such as Marcelo, Modric and Ramos are beginning to look a bit leggy. At the start of the season, it would have been madness to think Zidane could end up looking for new employment come May. But, if the current situation isn’t corrected, who would be surprised if Perez handed him a pink slip?

Team Grade – D


Sevilla’s Argentinian midfielder Guido Pizarro (R) celebrates with Sevilla’s Argentinian coach Eduardo Berizzo (L) after scoring a goal on November 21, 2017 at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan stadium in Sevilla during the UEFA Champions League group E football match between Sevilla FC and Liverpool FC. / AFP PHOTO / CRISTINA QUICLER (Photo credit should read CRISTINA QUICLER/AFP/Getty Images)

Best Player – Clement Lenglet

There’s no surprise that Europe’s elite have begun to circle for Lenglet. Since his arrival from Nancy in January 2017, he’s impressed all with his performances in the center of the Sevilla defense. He has all the tools required to be a top defender for years to come and the question now being asked is when and not if the Frenchman will become another Sevilla export to a big club.

Quiet Achiever – Guido Pizarro

To say Ever Banega is loved at Sevilla is an understatement. His return last summer was widely cheered but it is his Argentinian compatriot Pizarro who has had the better season so far. His role is rarely heralded, but his ability to get on the ball deep and set the tone of his team is vital.

Worst Player – Nolito

A lot more was expected of Nolito following his return to Spain. Inconsistent and ineffective play have seen him contribute a measly two goals. Simply not good enough.

Manager – Eduardo Berizzo (sacked)

Even with news circulating that Berizzo had problems with the likes of Steven N’zonzi, his removal from the Sevilla job came as a shock. Sitting 5th at the half-way point (and into the knockout stages of the Champions League) would likely have been the best Sevilla could have reasonably expected but it seems those in charge of Sevilla had different ideas. Vincenzo Montella has taken over and pressure is on him to deliver immediately.

Team Grade – B