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Winning 8 of past 10 matches, Madrid believe that opponents fear them once again

  /  autty

By winning eight of their past 10 matches, Real Madrid have returned to good form and they feel confident as they prepare for a decisive month of action.

There is a sense that the fear factor has returned for their opponents, after a few months when a fixture against the world champions wasn't seen as a particularly daunting task.

"They fear us once again," was a phrase heard in the away dressing room at the Estadio Wanda Metropolitano after Saturday's derby victory.

Barcelona's recent stumbles have reinforced the confidence at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu even further.

The Real Madrid squad have always had a target of winning this year's LaLiga Santander title, even if it didn't always seem that way.

Poor decisions and physical issues led to a poor few weeks in November and December and saw the gap open up at the top.

Now, Barcelona's lead over second-placed Real Madrid is just six points and there is belief in the dressing room that they can achieve something that seemed impossible just a few weeks ago.

Santiago Solari will need to use his entire squad if the capital city side are to truly compete on all three fronts and this means he needs Gareth Bale, Marco Asensio and Marcelo to get back to their best.

Real Madrid believe their time is now, especially with their favourite tournament returning this week.

Related: Real Madrid