- Arthiac Team
As the international fixtures continue to rumble on with nations arriving in the final stretch of their quest to qualify for the World Cup in Qatar 2022, we are already 4 months into the domestic league season with teams going through multiple turbulent times so far as the winter kicks on.
Real Madrid lost one of their iconic defensive duo's earlier this season as Sergio Ramos and Raphael Varane moved away from Spanish shores in search of green pastures elsewhere across Europe.
PSG and Manchester United are currently struggling with the fitness and recovery of Sergio Ramos and Raphael Varane.
If you look at it, the way this season has panned out, it clearly seems as though Real Madrid and Florentino Perez are winning the "battle of success on the pitch" by getting rid of one of their defensive duo's.
Earlier this season, Ramos ran down his contract and wanted to renew it for 2 years.
However, Perez offered a contract extension for just 1 year which was not accepted and appreciated by Ramos (by the looks of it).
On the other hand, At the age of 28, Varane wanted to move abroad to experience a different challenge in his career. It was a personal decision made by the French World Cup winner and Perez did not interfere with the ongoing interest from his asset at centre back.
Well, if you were a Madridista, you would be sitting in your cubicle at work or your sofa at home and wondering at the dire state that Real Madrid could find themselves in without a recognised centre back pairing.
That subtle thought became reality when Sergio Ramos moved to France as he signed for PSG as a free agent, while Raphael Varane moved to England as he signed for Manchester United for a £34 million fee.
However, both of them have had their seasons get off to turbulent starts in terms of results and availability on the field.
Sergio Ramos has still not made an appearance for PSG so far this season with an ongoing calf injury that kept him out since he moved to Paris.
Well, Spain's record holder for the most number of appearances has just returned to training on Tuesday as he aims to get back on the pitch after the international round of fixtures.
In England, Raphael Varane caused a lot of hype and buzz around the red side of Manchester as there were high hopes that he would solidify the defensive set up of the Red Devils.
However, the World Cup winner has not been able to find himself on the team sheet regularly with injuries catching up to him in his late 20's.
Ever since Varane joined Man Utd, he has struggled with 2 injuries. The first came while he was on international duty with France in the UEFA Nations League Final as he sustained a groin injury in the first half of the final against Spain.
That groin injury kept him out for a few weeks, although, a week after he returned from injury, Varane had yet another setback as he limped off against Atalanta in the Champions League with a hamstring injury. This recent injury will keep the Frenchman out for a month as he is set to miss a few crucial games for Man Utd after the international break.
Even during his time at Real Madrid, towards the end of last season, Varane was out due to Covid-19 and a leg injury that kept him out for 2.5 weeks.
With the departures of Sergio Ramos and Raphael Varane, it seems as though Florentino Perez has a keen eye on him as he is currently winning the battle as his recruitment of David Alaba has put in good performances and is mostly injury-free so far this season.
Eder Militao has also stepped up and taken huge responsibilities to fill in the boots that Ramos and Varane have left at the Bernabeu.
Even though Real Madrid have lost one of their defensive idols and regular performers, we're pretty sure that the Madridista's won't really mind as Los Blancos sit in second place in La Liga with 27 points on board after 12 league games as they head into the international break.
So far, Florentino Perez and Carlo Ancelotti have found a solution (or multiple solutions) to keep their defenders fit and running so far this season.
Yes, Real Madrid have not been prolific and stable while they're defending, but they're finding a way to get results in La Liga where a lot more teams are in line to claim the Spanish league title.
Without a shadow of a doubt, Real Madrid have the upper hand, they lead 2-0 in terms of their recruitment and selling policy so far this season.
Only time will tell how long Perez will keep winning, but the reality is, that when Perez wins, he wins big!