Despite coming off a rocky 2018-19 season, Real Madrid won the La Liga title for the 2019-20 season.
While some pundits were eager to see if Los Blancos could re-stabilize after Cristiano Ronaldo move to Juventus, the team proved that their level of teamwork and work ethic could not be paralleled in the Spanish league.
Not only does the squad have some of the world’s leading football talent wearing a Real Madrid jersey, but head coach Zinédine Zidane seems set on making a second name for himself as a coach.
Team captain Sergio Ramos is not far behind. Though the team struggled during their first season without Ronaldo in 2018-19, Ramos has since established himself as a strong replacement for the Portuguese powerhouse.
Leading from the back, Ramos managed to score ten goals this season, five of which came after the June La Liga restart. Two of these goals were crucial penalties that helped Los Blancos win against Getafe and Athletic Bilbao.
While other players like Vinicius Junior and Eden Hazard cannot be disregarded for what they contribute to the offense, Ramos has clearly moved into a position of leadership on the field.
Currently, there are rumours that Jan Vertonghen of Tottenham Hotspur may be joining Real Madrid next year. As a strong left-back, Vertonghen could offer Ramos more support in the backfield—though it is unclear if Real Madrid (and Ramos) need the help.
In fact, since Real Madrid was named La Liga champ, many have shifted their focus to rivals Barcelona, asking the question: what prevented Barça from taking the title, especially considering Los Blancos sub-par 2018-19 season?
At the moment, the club is pursuing action against Arthur Melo, while the MLS is attempting to woo Suarez. While Melo is now for Juventus, Suarez has not shown interest in the American League.
Teams including Inter Miami and Atlanta FC are the latest franchises to draw interest from punters who bet on major leagues and fans eager to fill stadiums. Still, Suarez likely has a few more years with La Blaugrana.
Real Madrid v. FC Barcelona, 2-3-2020
When ultra-rivals faced off in early March of this year, Real Madrid was desperate for a win. The past four matches in an El Clasico face off had gone to Barça, and Los Merengues were out for a decisive win.
The first half of the match was what any football fan dreams of watching: equally matched squads battling it out in an exciting and explosive face off. There were skilful plays built in the midfield that led to swift turnovers and exciting opportunities.
The second half was an equally unforgettable show. However, Real Madrid had the endurance and the steady, cohesive play that helped Vinicius Junior put one past Marc Ter Stegen at 71’
Two minutes into added time, Mariano Diaz stepped up to put a second goal in the net for a 2-0 win.
While this match between two powerhouse teams is a crowd favourite the world over, it was Real Madrid’s win here that helped the team keep their momentum going throughout the lengthy pause in play.
Real Madrid v. Athletic Bilbao, 5-7-2020
Coming off the heels of a tough game for a 1-0 win over Getafe, Los Blancos headed north to one of La Liga’s most unpredictable and difficult teams: Athletic Bilbao.
Not only were players tired by the altered schedule that saw matches be played in the gruelling heat, but their previous match against Bilbao had ended in a frustrating tie.
Though exhausted, Zinedine’s squad managed to hold on through the first and second halves.
Unable, once again, to capitalize on opportunities for a goal, it looked like Los Blancos may end their winning streak in the north.
In the end, Real Madrid came away with a win similar to their previous victory against Getafe, which relied on Sergio Ramos.
Much like his predecessor Ronaldo, Ramos stepped up to put away penalty kicks against Getafe and Athletic Bilbao.
Both penalties came after the 70-minute mark, but Ramos did not let fatigue shake his concentration.
The victory against the Lions put Real Madrid six points ahead of the competition in La Liga and was one of the decisive victories that led to their title grab this past season.