4 reasons why Real Madrid will retain the Champions League crown
There’s no other football club in the world who has had more success in the UEFA Champions League than Real Madrid. After a relative long wait (a bit more than 10 years), the Spanish and European giants have finally clinched the 10th Champions League title in the club’s history and they’ve had the fortune of accomplishing that precisely against one of their major rivals, Atletico Madrid.
Since the competition began being disputed back in 1955, the Merengues have been one of the main favorites to win it year after year. Judging not only from what we’ve seen until now, but also on how several of the major sports bookmakers like William Hill are pricing the top contenders’ chances, this season it doesn’t appear it will be any different. Let’s take a brief look at some of the main reasons why Real Madrid seems to be on the pole position to retain their UEFA Champions League title and which, in case of happening, will actually be the first time any team pulls it off since the competition changed its format in 1992.
#1: The perks of counting with the best player in the world in their ranks
It’s probably not an overstatement to say that when a team is fortunate enough to have a player of Cristiano Ronaldo‘s caliber in their ranks, they simply become one of the top favorites to win whatever tournament they are in. Last season, the Portuguese star already gave us a good taste of his prolific form when he broke the competition’s top scoring record after netting 17 goals in 11 UEFA Champions League appearances. This year, and even though he may have started things slowly than he’d have wished (3 goals in 4 games), everyone knows how valuable he still is for Real Madrid and how crucial he can be when it comes to make the difference against tougher opponents.
#2: The relief of having ended with the pressure of winning “La Décima”
Many football pundits and fans seemed to believe that one of the main reasons for Real Madrid not to have won their 10th UEFA Champions League before than they did, had precisely to do with the fact that everyone in the club was feeling way too much pressure to deliver this much-wanted title. That weight in the shoulders was finally relieved at the end of last season and even though in a club like Real Madrid there will always be a lot of pressure to win everything they get into, the players and the staff around the team will certainly feel a lot more comfortable in the years ahead.
#3: Odds favorite
If there’s anyone out there who has plenty of reasons to be interested in properly assessing a certain team’s chances of winning a competition such as the UEFA Champions League, that’s a sports bookmaker company. The renowned William Hill for example, are currently pricing Real Madrid and Bayern Munich as the top contenders to win the UCL this season, offering the exact same payout for both teams to go all the way: 3.00. Behind these two major favorites are FC Barcelona (5.00), closely followed by José Mourinho‘s Chelsea FC (6.00).
#4: Carlo Ancelotti’s cool
One thing that has been pointed out as a massive change from José Mourinho‘s dynasty in Real Madrid to Carlo Ancelotti‘s recent journey in the club is precisely the peacefulness atmosphere that the Italian seems to have brought with him. We all know how Mourinho appreciates sparking up controversy everywhere he goes and how harsh he can be when handling matters inside his locker room. With Ancelotti, peace seems to have once again taken over of Real Madrid‘s affairs and that’s something which several of the team’s players already admitted to be playing in their favor.
Sources: timescolonist / williamhill.com / realmadrid.com / telegraph.co.uk