Carlo Ancelotti needs some clear thinking to sort Real Madrid's escalating troubles

Los Blancos have had a shocking week in La Liga and Champions League

Real Madrid have endured a week in which everything collapsed. After the euphoria of a 6-1 win against Mallorca on September 22, crisis is a reality after three games without a win.

It all started with a goalless draw against Villarreal at the Bernabeu. Real began to show deficiencies that existed before, but which had been disguised with victories.

The bad omens were confirmed in the Champions League against Sheriff in the 2-1 home defeat. It was a shock and a big setback with the team showing too much defensive weakness.

The hat-trick of poor results was completed with Sunday's 2-1 defeat against Espanyol. A bad end to an awful week for manager Carlo Ancelotti.

The criticism is unanimous and focuses on the defence. The Italian coach has not found the key at the back to making Real a solid and reliable team, and the continuous changes in the players' positions are not helping.

Everyone knows that Ancelotti is struggling with Dani Carvajal's injuries and Ferland Mendy's prolonged absence, but the carousel of confused changes is the target of fierce judgment.

Ancelotti has tried everything when it comes to forming a defence, but in a muddled way.

The best example is Nacho, who in one week played at right-back, left-back and central defence. Ancelotti went so far as to put Federico Valverde at right-back and Eduardo Camavinga at left-back. The coach has tried three players on the right side of the defence (Lucas Vazquez, Valverde and Nacho) and on the left he has already fielded David Alaba, Miguel Gutierrez and Nacho.

It is a bewildering tactic difficult to unravel for the players and the fans.

Real Madrid slump against Sheriff

In Madrid, it was never thought that the post-Sergio Ramos-Raphael Varane era would be so difficult.

The midfield is another testing ground for Ancelotti, who has also been criticised by the club's hierarchy for a change in the style that has raised doubts in the dressing room and with them, problems on the field.

Ancelotti appears to have lost his talismanic influence, even if Real are still just clinging on to top spot in La Liga.

The attack no longer compensates for the serious defensive problems. Although it is the most productive area - Real are the top scoring team in the league with 22 goals, nine ahead of Rayo Vallecano - Karim Benzema's goals are no longer enough to disguise the team's problems.

Real had a promising start to the season but that has been undermined, despite their lofty position and remaining high hopes in the Champions League.

With more European dates on the horizon, Ancelotti has the international break to improve his team and get it right. He has to do it and he has the capabilities to turn off the warning lights.

Updated: October 6th 2021, 7:06 AM