After having suffered so much with injuries this season, the absence of Marcelo‘s name on the squad list to face Granada did not surprise many at Real Madrid.
Last-minute casualties and niggles have been so common for Los Blancos that it is no longer a shock to see players being absent.
Real Madrid have been very much in survival mode this season and perhaps the choice of 19-year-old Miguel Gutierrez is a good one compared to the ageing Marcelo.
The absence of the Brazilian, however, has a little more depth than what meets the eye.
According to Real Madrid sources, the absence of Marcelo isn’t due to any physical problems but rather a technical decision made by Zinedine Zidane.
Despite only having three fit first-team defenders to choose from – Alvaro Odriozola, Nacho Fernandez and Eder Militao – Zidane has seen fit to call up Castilla left-back Miguel instead of Marcelo.
The reason for choosing the youngster over Marcelo isn’t clear yet, but the absence has sparked some commotion.
As MARCA has heard, there has been no clash between Zidane and Marcelo, but the footballer did leave the Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano feeling rather upset following Real Madrid‘s draw with Sevilla, where he was substituted for Miguel in the second half.
An excellent relationship
Marcelo has arguably had his worst season in a Real Madrid shirt, playing second fiddle to Ferland Mendy. And when he has played, he hasn’t performed at the expected level.
Mendy‘s injury opened the door for Marcelo in late April, but after a handful of average performances, Zidane began to look elsewhere.
Zidane decided to look towards Castilla and found Miguel, a member of Raul Gonzalez’s UEFA Youth League-winning side last summer.
Miguel made his Real Madrid first-team debut at the age of 18 in a friendly against Fenerbahce in 2019, and his resurgence into the team started to be a hindrance for Marcelo, who saw his playing time cut even further.
The Brazilian’s omittance to the squad against Granada is strange and something that Zidane will no doubt have to explain after the match.
The Frenchman won’t be expected to say anything beyond it being a ‘technical decision’ and will reiterate that the relationship between player and coach has always been an amicable one, up to the point where Marcelo has even said that Zidane is the most influential coach that he has had his career.