Valencia boss Marcelino believes Real Madrid are ‘weaker’ than last season after discussing his side’s chances of a title push.
Los Blancos are already currently in fourth in La Liga, eight points behind league leaders and rivals Barcelona, despite being just 14 games into the season.
Boss Zinedine Zidane is under pressure to get his side performing, having won the title last season, along with the last two editions of the Champions League after being promoted from the Castilla in 2016.
In contrast, Valencia sit second having lost their first game of the season at the weekend to Getafe; and former Villarreal boss Marcelino believes Madrid are significantly ‘weaker’ than last season.
“In my opinion, Real Madrid’s squad now is weaker than it was last season,” Marcelino told Radio Marca.
“I believe they have lost potential over the past year with the players who have left the club in that time period.
“It will be a very interesting La Liga title race this season and right now it is hugely difficult to assess who is the favourite, there are probably five teams in the mix.
“You look at Barcelona, Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid who are always involved and Sevilla have been for the past few years too.
“Maybe with the current league table then Barcelona are the slight favourites, while we have come from the furthest back.”
Valencia have the advantage over Barca, Atletico, Real Madrid and Sevilla this week due to their inactivity in European competition, before they Celta Vigo on Saturday evening at the Mestalla.
A victory for Los Che would see them put pressure on Barca, who meet Villarreal on Sunday evening at El Madrigal.
The 1-0 defeat to Getafe saw them drop five points behind Ernesto Valverde’s side, who drew with Celta 2-2 at the Camp Nou.
Following that game at the weekend, Valencia have a relatively kind run before back-to-back games with Real and Atletico Madrid at the start of February.