Real Madrid moves into this international break in good heart. They are one point off the summit of LaLiga with one game in hand. La Real enjoys the lead but that is just a matter of time until Real gets their extra game. As such, Real Madrid is also finishing up their plans for the upcoming transfer window in January. Although the squad that looked in adept has overdone all expectations under the new boss Carlo Ancelotti, there still are areas that need work.
One such area seems to be the center-forward. Karim Benzema has been piloting that role in Real Madrid for ages now. He stepped up his game after his partner in crime, Cristiano Ronaldo decided to leave the Bernabeu and has been a class performer for Los Blancos since. However, in the recent games, we have seen the Frenchman showing signs of fatigue. He was also recalled by his national side after six years and while Madridistas were all happy for their F1 striker, national duty has indeed added to his fatigue.
As such, the role of a backup striker becomes an important one in Real Madrid. Los Blancos have a seriously talented prospect in the Serbian Luka Jovic but Carlo Ancelotti has been hesitant about giving him his minutes. The season could be a long one if Don Carlo doesn’t trust his first-choice replacement for Karim Benzema.
In the game against Elche when Benz asked for a rest, it was Mariano Diaz who got his season debut but not the talented Serbian we all want to see succeed in the white shirt. Mariano gave a committed performance on the field. Let’s face it, he is no more the player Real’s scouting team thought he’d be when the transfer was made.
That performance against Elche, though, was a positive one. He even got an assist to his name. He made his usual mistakes of not passing to a better-placed teammate and failing at individual battles unnecessarily. However, the night ended miserably for Diaz as he sustained an injury to his head and had to get stitches.
The case for former Real Madrid man Raul de Tomas as the backup striker
Truth be told, Mariano Diaz was never an option, with or without an injury defending his case. Luka Jovic was an option. But, there’s no reciprocation on Carlo Ancelotti’s end. Here is where former Madrid man Raul de Tomas comes in. RDT recently expressed his desire to come back to the Bernabeu someday. In fact, before the game against Espanyol, RDT was spotted saying that he still considered himself a Madridista.
Well, there is indeed something special about this club that everyone aspires to come to the Bernabeu and wear that white kit or someone who has been a part aspires to come back. However, Real Madrid is not a place that runs on emotions. But, one needs to make their case with enough tangible evidence. So where does RDT stand in that regard?
Well, he is currently 27 years old. That means he is still peaking his prime and a transfer to a new club would logically mean that he’d play out his best days with them. As far as his current season goes, he has been Espanyol’s main man forward with seven goals and two assists, per SofaScore. He is tied with Vinicius Junior and Luis Suarez at the second spot in the Pichichi race.
Madridistas will clearly remember that 2-1 loss Real faced away from home at Espanyol. Both their goals were scored by RDT and he remained a key threat throughout. This has been a constant feature about the matches Espanyol has played and needless to say RDT has started 12 out of the 13 they have played this season.
Moreover, it wouldn’t be the worst thing to bring an experienced player to play as the backup striker. He’d have to replace Karim Benzema and that leaves a huge void of experience and RDT being a former Madrid player understands the requirements of the job. Secondly, Real Madrid has found two brilliant young wingers in Vinicius Junior and Rodrygo Goes and an experienced center-forward with a few couples of foreseeable playing years will round off the attacking lineup perfectly.
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Overall, Raul de Tomas is a name Real Madrid should stay open to in case they cannot secure the dream moves i.e Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland or if Don Carlo cannot trust his talented Serbian prospect, Luka Jovic.