Real Madrid has a tactical & personal (human) "problem" coming into the Final of the UEFA Champions League that hasn't an easy solution. Spanish International midfielder & regular Xabi Alonso will not be able to partake with his team against Atletico de Madrid in the Lisbon Final on the 24th of May because of yellow card accumulation. His absence has left a worrying "hole" strategically in the Real Madrid midfield that his giving the Real Madrid technical staff a "head-ache". 

The natural solution is 24 year old Asier Illarramendi who was bought for nearly 40M€ from Real Sociedad as the eventual replacement of Xabi Alonso. A very talented Football player & a promise for the Spanish International team that has no debate. However, the young player is currently undergoing a "confidence crisis" that has Coach Ancelotti concerned.

Illarramendi suffers doubts in his game that have been exacerbated by a mistake in the Quarter-Final match against Borussia Dortmund that lead directly to a Marco Reus goal after losing the ball in the midfield. Illarramendi was "mentally devasted" & Coach Ancelotti took him off at half-time for Isco attempting to "soften" the change for the player.    


Again against Valencia CF in Liga on Sunday, Coach Ancelotti substituted Illarramendi as he looked to avoid a loss that would have been the end of all chances for Real Madrid in conquering the Spanish Liga title. 

The Italian Coach knows beforehand that another midfielder is better situated for the Champions League Final & has much more confidence, he is Casemiro, but the Brazilian did not cost 40M€, plus leaving out Illarramendi from the Champions League Final maybe the final blow that pushes over the edge young Illaramendi.

The Real Madrid Coach may continue with his policy of giving more playing time to Illarrramendi for the remaining three Liga matches in an attempt to build up the players confidence but all three games are vital as a lost in any will be good-bye to the Spanish Liga title. 

Dilemma, & an important one at that for the Real Madrid Coaching staff. Illarramendi or Casemiro? 

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