It has not been a particularly encouraging pre-season for Real Madrid, with their tour of the United States finishing with two draws and two defeats from four matches, while only five goals were scored and nine were conceded.
As such, the aim is to forget what took place on the other side of the Atlantic and to start afresh, with all eyes on next Tuesday’s UEFA Super Cup clash with Manchester United.
The players are convinced that the pre-season has warmed them up and now they’re ready to fight for a title in their first competitive game of the 2017/18 campaign.
They drew with Jose Mourinho’s team in the International Champions Cup and then lost in a penalty shootout, but this time there is no margin for error as they face the Red Devils again in Skopje 16 days later.
There is precedent for Los Blancos following up a poor summer with UEFA Super Cup success, as they did exactly that in 2014, which was their worst ever pre-season.
Four of the five friendlies were lost that year and the other was drawn, but they then defeated Sevilla 2-0 in the battle between the Champions League winners and the Europa League champions.
Zinedine Zidane will hope for a similar outcome this time around.