Real Madrid Choose Surprise Free Kick Taker for Next Season

Real Madrid Choose Surprise Free Kick Taker for Next Season

Isaac Darko
updated at July 5, 2023 at 11:25 AM
In this article:
Spanish La Liga logo
SPA La Liga
  • Real Madrid have named a new set piece expert for next season
  • Karim Benzema was Los Blancos' most recent free kick-taker
  • The Frenchman has since joined Saudi Arabian club Al-Ittihad

Set piece responsibilities will be one of the biggest changes for Real Madrid going into the 2023/24 season.

After all, the individuals who previously dominated the department have either departed the Spanish capital or may no longer hold the same prominence.

Karim Benzema had been solely responsible for taking penalties in recent seasons, scoring nine last year.

Real Madrid, free-kick, Rodrygo
One of the biggest changes heading into the 2023/24 campaign for Real Madrid will be the set-piece duties. Credit: @marca
Source: Twitter

Now that the Frenchman has left the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium to join Al-Ittihad, Los Blancos need someone to take the reins.

Toni Kroos, Luka Modric, and Marco Asensio have dominated free kick opportunities over the past few seasons. However, the experienced midfielders won't take centre stage and the winger has departed the La Liga giants.

The main set piece taker for Real Madrid next season will instead be Rodrygo, according to reports from AS, via Tribuna.

The Brazilian sensation has demonstrated the technique needed to excel on that stage. He scored his first free kick for Los Blancos against Bayern Munich in a preseason friendly.

According to Madrid Universal, Rodrygo then replicated his success against Sevilla on the 37th Matchday of La Liga earlier this year to counter Rafa Mir’s opener.

The 22-year-old will now have more chances to establish his value in set pieces and this also confirms his place as a regular starter for Real Madrid come August.

Rodrygo recorded 30 goal contributions in 57 appearances for the club this past season. He could boost those numbers now that converting set pieces falls to him.

Ancelotti denies feud with Rodrygo

In related news, Sports Brief reported on Real Madrid manager, Carlo Ancelotti denying a rift with Rodrygo following Real Madrid's come-from-behind victory against Villarreal in their Copa del Rey clash.

The Yellow Submarine took a 2-0 lead into the half-time break, with Los Blancos rallying to win the game 3-2, but the major talking point came after the Brazilian was substituted in the 56th minute.

Rodrygo did not look happy at Marco Asensio taking his place, with Ancelotti then seen in an intense discussion with the winger on the bench, leading many to believe there was some trouble in paradise.

Isaac Darko photo
Isaac Darko
Isaac Darko is a La Liga, Ligue 1 and Bundesliga editor at Sports Brief with a Degree in Journalism and Communications from Ghana Institute of Journalism (2010)