James Rodriguez has had a quiet start to his Real Madrid career. The Colombian international joined Madrid in the summer, after a sensational World Cup, for a reported fee of around €80m. Quite naturally, the expectations around him are high.
The 23-year-old was seen as a direct like-for-like replacement for Angel di Maria who has joined Manchester United in the summer for a British transfer fee record. He has drawn natural comparison to Di Maria, with coach Carlo Ancelotti said recently that he can not expect his new superstar to play like the Argentine.
Rodriguez has managed one goal and two assists so far in La Liga and is slowly settling down at his new club. He put up a strong performance against Athletic Bilbao yesterday and was happy to perform the task asked by his manager.
When asked to comment about the pressure and the challenge to fill the boots left by Di Maria, the Colombian said as quoted by Spanish newspaper AS:
“Di Maria is a great player, he did a lot here, he made history and I respect him a lot. He’s very well liked here and I’ve just arrived, I want to make history too.”
Di Maria, on the other hand, has picked up the form exactly where he left for Real Madrid and has taken the Premier League by storm, scoring three goals and managing three assists in five league appearances so far.