Calgary, Alberta, Canada. July 10, 2020. La Liga Spanish Football Soccer close up to their logo on a jersey. Calgary, Alberta, Canada. July 10, 2020. La Liga Spanish Football Soccer close up to their logo on a jersey. LicenseRM 15796400 LIC:RM

Under the familiar and intuitive leadership of the returning Carlo Ancelotti, Real Madrid enjoyed an unexpectedly superb campaign in 2022/23.

In fact, they landed the coveted double of La Liga and Champions League titles, with the latter competition seeing them overcome the three big hitters in the Premier League (Chelsea, Manchester City and Liverpool) in the final three rounds.

However, Los Blancos are just 10/1 to retain their UCL crown next season, with the 888Starz bonus code unlocking significant value if you want to bet at these odds. Similarly, Barcelona are expected to provide stiff competition to win La Liga, so Madrid aren’t widely fancied to achieve similar success next time around.

Of course, Ancelotti’s weren’t widely backed last season either, so Madrid won’t care about being considered relative underdogs once again (in Europe, at least). But what does next season really have in store for Los Blancos?

The Ins and Outs – The Transfer Window So Far

In many ways, this summer transfer window was tipped to be a seminal one in Madrid, with the club expected to complete the signing of PSG’s Kylian Mbappe and potentially add the prolific Erling Haaland to their squad.

However, Mbappe was ultimately made an offer that he couldn’t refuse by the PSG board, while Haaland opted to join Manchester City in a cut-price £51 million deal after protracted negotiations.

In fact, Madrid have made just one major signing during the pre-season to date, namely that of the dynamic midfielder Aurelien Tchouameni from Monaco for €80 million. Roving centre back Antonio Rudgier has also signed from Chelsea on a free transfer, while a number of younger players have returned to the club after their loan deals expired.

Conversely, Gareth Bale, Marcelo and playmaker Isco have left the club on free transfers, with Madrid undoubtedly embarked on a gradual changing of the guard.

Bale will now ply his trade in the MLS, while Marcelo and Isco remain without a club as the new season approaches.

Can Madrid Replicate Their 2021/22 Success Next Season?

While Madrid have been linked with a move for precocious Borussia Dortmund midfielder Jude Bellingham, they seem to be more preoccupied with tying down their young stars to long-term deals.

More specifically, the club is close to agreeing new contracts with Rodrygo, Vinicius Junior and Eder Militao. Rodrygo will sign a six-year deal until 2028, while Vinicius and Militao will agree to extend their stay for four years each.

What’s more, these new deals will include release causes worth a combined €1 billion, as Real continue to build towards the future and create a side that can challenge on all fronts for several years.

With the acquisition of Tchouameni supplementing a new look midfield that could also include the excellent Eduardo Camavinga more regularly next season, Los Blancos are also looking to create a more mobile, athletic and dynamic midfield. At the same time, they’re clearly preparing for life after Toni Kroos and Luka Modric, which will require a significant transition.

What will remain unchanged is Madrid’s indefatigable spirit and overwhelming quality in all areas of the pitch, while the cool head and authoritative guidance of Carlo Ancelotti also provides genuine reassurance regardless of the challenges that lie ahead.

So, it would be a brave person to bet against Madrid to achieve similar success in 2022/23, particularly when you consider the club’s affinity with the Champions League and the quality that they possess within their squad.