Real Madrid new Coach Rafael Benitez is one day into his new job & he already has a problem that needs to be solved & with certain diplomacy, a personal facet that ex-players under his orders say is not one of his stronger points.
The issue is the Real Madrid forward line, concretely its setup tactically on the field. Under ex-Coach Ancelotti his preferred 4 - 3 - 3 system allowed him to field Cristiano Ronaldo, Benzema & Bale in that order. However, new Coach Benitez preferred system is 4 - 2 - 3 - 1, or alternatively 4-4-2, thus someone in the above mentioned list of three players will have to go. Frenchman Karim Benzema is the one in a least favourable situation at this moment.
Many Football observers believe that Real Madrid is not reaping in the full potential of Gareth Bale on the right side, that his natural position is the left wing. However, that "field territory" is reserved for Cristiano Ronaldo, thus the first Rafa Benitez headache.
The Portuguese star has lost his speed with age, natural it happens to everyone, & with his natural evolution has demonstrated that he is more effective in the goal area. Thus the Football experts suggest that Cristiano Ronaldo should be the team's true Nº9 - Centre Forward" - allowing Bale the left wing & both fitting into the two preferred tactical schemes of Benitez.
So what is the problem? Cristiano Ronaldo, who does not desire to be the N º 9 of the team, Bale on the other hand would see a personal wish come true if moved to the left, a petition that he has expressed privately many times. So, what next? New Coach Rafa Benitez has his first "mini fire" that will need to be put out with plenty of diplomacy & perhaps hard hand.
What is the other problem? Karim Benzema, where does the Frenchman fit into the tactical scheme? The forward has a juicy offer from Manchester United which could be an option if things get heated up local. But, Karim is a "favoured son" of President Florentino Perez & an exit looks unlikely at this stage.
Therefore, stay tuned, as things will get interesting when the players return from their summer break & begin the pre-season. It will be interesting to see the solutions Rafa Benitez comes up with tactically speaking with the forward line & the rest of the team. Added, it will be interesting to see how Ronaldo handles things & if Benzema has a place or not.