After a 2-1 aggregate defeat to rivals Atletico in the Spanish Super Cup, Real Madrid are already feeling the effects of not having Angel Di Maria. The Argentinian star has been involved in transfer rumors after Madrid signed World Cup Golden Boot winner James Rodriguez. With the addition of Rodriguez, Di Maria’s involvement for Madrid has slowly been disappearing. Barely getting time in the UEFA Super Cup and Spanish Super Cup has led the footballing world to believe that the 26-year old’s time at the Bernabeu are coming to an end.
After having a breakout year, which included scoring in the Copa Del Rey final and winning man of the match honors in the Champions League final, no one would ever guess that Di Maria would be involved in a transfer out of Madrid anytime soon. Unfortunately, President Florentino Perez has other plans. Perez is trying to assemble a second generation of Galacticos and it doesn’t seem that Di Maria is part of his plans. It has been reported that teammates Sergio Ramos and Cristiano Ronaldo have asked Perez to keep Di Maria, but the transfer is looking inevitable as teams like Manchester United are desperately preparing bids for the Argentine.
In losing Di Maria, Madrid are losing a high-energy player who plays a vital role on both sides of the pitch. Known for his quick speed, stamina, and crossing ability, Di Maria was the perfect fit for a squad with the likes of Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema. Besides Ronaldo, Di Maria was the most skillful player for Madrid. Having the ability to take on multiple players freed up space for his teammates while also forcing opposing teams to play more defensively. Manager Carlos Ancelotti now has two days to decide on who will replace Di Maria. Rodriguez will most likely replace the Argentine, but should he fail to meet expectations, Isco would also be an option.
Regarded by many as the engine of the team, Di Maria will truly be missed by Real Madrid. Although they still have a tremendously strong squad, it’s safe to say that no one can replace Angel Di Maria.
Asheer Mahbob is a soccer writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @el_especial24.