Real Madrid star man James Rodriguez could spend the upcoming season on the substitute’s bench, according to Marca.
Having lit up the 2014 World Cup, James Rodriguez joined Real Madrid from Monaco for a fee of £63 million. The midfielder managed to score 13 goals and bag 13 assists in 29 league games for the Spanish giants in his debut season, under the management of Carlo Ancelotti.
However, following Ancelotti’s departure from the Spanish capital, Rodriguez struggled under his successor Rafa Benitez, and the play-maker’s situation got even worse under Los Blancos’ newest (and current) boss Zinedine Zidane.
James spent the second half of the previous season mainly on the bench, and remained absent from a majority of Real Madrid’s crucial games, featuring in them as either a mere substitute, or not at all.
It looked like the 25-year-old was definitely on his way out of the Madrid-based club, with other big clubs from all around Europe showing genuine interest in his services. But he ended up taking a surprising u-turn, and expressed his desire to fight for a starting spot in Zidane’s team.
However, the Colombia international may live to regret his decision, if Marca is to be believed.
As per the Spanish newspaper’s latest report, James Rodriguez could lose his place in the starting line-up to Real Madrid’s young starlet Marco Asensio.
Asensio, who spent the previous season out on loan at Espanyol, was involved in the European Champions’ Canada and US tour.
The 20-year-old performed impressively against PSG, and also managed to score an excellent goal against Chelsea. And these pre-season displays by the Majorcan international have apparently convinced Zidane to include the youngster in Real’s first team for the upcoming season.
It still remains to be seen whether Asensio is good enough to displace James from the starting line-up. But if it turns out that he is, the Colombian sensation will have no choice but to spend another season on the bench, or take the escape route he is reportedly being offered by Manchester United while it lasts.