Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Update On The Future Of This Real Madrid Defender: What Should Be Ancelotti’s Play Here?

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Abhinab Ghosh
A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.

In a recent tweet, Onda Cero journalist Edu Pidal has offered an update on the future of Real Madrid defender Alvaro Odriozola this summer. It is believed that the Spanish right-back is not a part of Los Blancos manager Carlo Ancelotti’s first-team plans for the new campaign.

Odrizola’s Injury Ravaged Campaign In Spanish Football

Odriozola endured an injury-plagued season at the Spanish capital but still managed to put in a few impressive displays for the Madrid outfit down the right flank. The Spaniard scored two goals and picked up two yellow cards in 16 matches for Los Blancos last season in various competitions.

The 25-year-old struggled to be consistent in the attacking third as he averaged 1.1 tackles, 0.5 interceptions, 0.7 clearances, 0.6 key passes and 0.6 dribbles per 90 minutes in the previous La Liga campaign. However, he was excellent with his ball distribution after completing 90.6% of his attempted passes in the Spanish first division (stats via whoscored).

Odriozola’s current deal with Los Blancos runs out in the summer of 2024 but the lack of game time and frequent injuries has put his future at Madrid in doubt. Now that he is not a part of Ancelotti’s plans for the new season, he should think about switching clubs in search of more playing minutes in the coming seasons.

Update on the future of Real Madrid's Odriozola who is seen in the picture
May 16, 2021, Bilbao, Spain: Alvaro Odriozola of Real Madrid during the La Liga Santander match between Athletic Club de Bilbao and Real Madrid at Estadio San Mames in Bilbao, Spain. Bilbao Spain – ZUMAd159 20210516_zia_d159_367 Copyright: xIndirax

What Should Be Ancelotti’s Play Here With Regards To Odriozola?

Odriozola has served as a decent utility player at times under Real Madrid’s former manager Zinedine Zidane’s stewardship last season. He is a solid defensive presence down the right-wing and can also get forward to deliver some inviting crosses into the opposition penalty box. The four-time Spain international is primarily a right-back but can also fill in as a right-winger if needed which made him such a useful member of Zidane’s squad.

However, Odriozola has sometimes lacked consistency on the field which could be why Ancelotti has not included him in his plans for the upcoming campaign. Either way, the Italian head coach has no reason to keep him at the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium beyond this summer and should consider cashing in on him if a suitable offer arrives from another club this summer.

At 25, Odriozola has plenty of time left to get his career back on track but he would be wise to seal a move away from Madrid so that he can find some form at the highest level. Los Blancos should also look to use the money generated from his potential sale to find a suitable replacement who would be capable of playing first-team football for them every week in the Spanish top-flight next season.

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