Commentary

Real Madrid unfazed by pre-season woes

Real Madrid lost all three matches at the International Champions Cup, including a 3-2 loss to Barcelona on Saturday, but head coach Zinedine Zidane and his players are not concerned.

The European champions face the MLS all-stars Wednesday in Chicago, then return home before facing Manchester United in the UEFA Super Cup Aug. 8 in Skopje.

"When there is a title in the middle," captain Sergio Ramos said, "then everything is different and we're working well to be ready for Aug. 8."

Cristiano Ronaldo is back in Spain, where he is fighting charges of tax evasion, while Sergio Ramos returned to camp late. Spanish U-21s Dani Ceballos, Jesus Vallejo and Marcos Llorente got a late start in summer training because they had been playing the UEFA U-21 Championships, where Spain finished said.

The Real Madrid defense will need Sergio Ramos back at 100 percent as it was a mess against Barcelona on Saturday in the mini-Clasico the Catalan team won, 3-2.

Still, Zidane has a rather clear idea of his starting lineup. The key will be building the team's depth with young returnees like Mateo Kovacic, Marco Asensio, Oscar, Quezada and Franchu.

Zidane will also need to integrate newcomers like Dani Ceballos (Real Betis), Marcos Llorente (Alaves), Jesus Vallejo (Eintracht Frankfurt) and Theo Hernandez (Atletico Madrid) into the team.

Real Madrid lost to Manchester United on penalty kicks and fell to Manchester City (4-1) and Barcelona in the ICC. After the UEFA Super, it will play Barcelona in the two-leg Spanish Super Cup before La Liga season starts on Aug. 20 at Deportivo Coruna.
1 comment about "Real Madrid unfazed by pre-season woes".
  1. beautiful game, August 1, 2017 at 10:18 a.m.

    I'd be more worried about the LA Galaxy than RM. It's pre-season for the former and the venom gets real during the season.

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