Real Madrid won the Champions League and La Liga double last season, but in no small part did they have their goalkeeper to thank for those achievements. While Karim Benzema performed miracles in front of goal, Thibaut Courtois was doing equally special things between the sticks.
That was never more clear than in the Champions League final, as Courtois almost single-handedly thwarted Liverpool’s attacking efforts. Making nine saves on the night, his 59 stops across the competition topped the charts since records began in 2003.
As Los Blancos prepare for the season in Los Angeles, they gave a special insight into Courtois and the other Real Madrid goalkeepers’ training routine with their ‘Inside Training’ video.
— Real Madrid C.F. (@realmadrid) July 29, 2022
During the video Courtois remarks that this training is the “basis for the whole season”, given there is not sufficient time to train in the same manner during the season.
As a vocal critic of the increasingly crammed football calendar, it does beg the question whether football would be of a higher quality if players weren’t so tired. While the grind is part and parcel of the season for big teams, often we are robbed of some of the finest players on the biggest occasions due to injury.