Marca Report: Real Madrid’s Physical Peak at Wembley after the ‘Injury Storm’

Updated 05/30/2024 – 11:09 CEST

The coordinated work of the coaching staff and medical team of Real Madrid is yielding truly spectacular results this season. Ancelotti’s leadership, Pintus’ physical plan, and the work of the medical services have been key to reaching London. And not just in any way, because the team is in optimal condition. After a tumultuous chapter with injuries, Real Madrid has been living in a physical peak ecosystem that has been maintained until the Wembley final. The Real Madrid squad has suffered 31 injuries so far this season. The number is low considering the 53 from the 22-23 season or the 63 from the 21-22 season, the campaign of the Fourteenth. The problem for Madrid came from accumulation rather than quantity, as many injuries occurred between November and December. An obstacle that was overcome remarkably: seven wins and one draw in eight games with seven or more absences. Real Madrid and its fans are an unstoppable force. They convey a power and a way of experiencing competition, especially the Champions League, unconditionally linked to limitless effort and a faith in victory that inevitably prevails. The 31 injuries this season must also be interpreted in terms of the impact on playing time. That is, the length of time each injury has caused. Something that Madrid has also managed well. Of the 31 injuries, 11 (36%) have resulted in a downtime of less than three weeks. Injuries of very little impact on the player physically because they allow for a quick return to competition. In this sense, only five Real Madrid injuries (16%) have exceeded eight weeks of downtime. These are significant injuries because they do disrupt and break the player’s rhythm and affect the team.

Living a Champions League final is a very difficult experience to explain. And even more challenging to face as a protagonist on the field due to the high stakes involved. Pressure is a crucial aspect to consider, and the great advantage of Real Madrid is that many of its players have experienced this before and mentally they will know how to handle each of those stressful and decisive minutes. The Madrid fans have started to move towards Wembley. It is a calm but unstoppable tide that will keep their players standing until the end. And without looking at the clock. Ancelotti and his coaching staff have worked intelligently throughout the month of May. Real Madrid had six commitments leading up to the Wembley final and they have distributed playing time with surgical precision based on needs, precautions, and fitness levels. It may seem easy, but it is complicated. Many physical factors and data need to be adjusted. The result is a starting lineup that almost perfectly matches their performance on the field. With only one setback, the injury of Tchouaméni which rules him out for the match against Dortmund. The starting lineup at Wembley has ‘distant’ injuries, except for Courtois, who suffered his last physical issue in mid-March. The rest date back to February (Vini, Bellingham, Rüdiger, or Nacho) and in several cases to last year (Camavinga, Mendy, and Carvajal). Additionally, up to three of Ancelotti’s starters have not been injured throughout the season: Kroos, Valverde, and Rodrygo.