Jorge Valdano has asserted that uncertainty between Karim Benzema and Gonzalo Higuain over starting at Real Madrid has hit both players’ form.
The duo have traditionally been alternated between during Jose Mourinho’s reign and this season in particular they have played very times together.
For Valdano, the strikers’ respective dips in form are a direct result of the constant chopping and changing.
“If we look at the statistics, the two are getting fewer goals than last season,” began the former Madrid player, Coach and director, who clashed with Mourinho before his departure last season.
“I think their duel for a position has been of benefit for a while. But there comes a time that when you are having to prove yourself every day that you begin to tire.
“Neither has won the race. Some weeks we see a step forward for Higuain, other weeks Benzema looks to be ahead.
“But I encourage them to decide, not even the fans know who is starting each game. And that uncertainty is often uncomfortable for the big stars.
“Especially so if the situation is prolonged for a long time. It doesn’t help Real Madrid for their game nor their aggressiveness, which they had last season.”
Valdano, in speaking to Cadena SER this week, also provided an interesting soundbite in relation to the international breaks that interrupt League fixtures.
“It is increasingly difficult to work around a calendar that is this crazy. The players today are true heroes, because they travel around the world, sleep on planes and when short on fitness go out on the field, whilst we require that they also live like monks.
“A footballer today runs 11 or 12 miles a game. 20 years ago you ran eight per game and then you might play three times one week and twice the next, but now they play every Wednesday and every Sunday…”