Marcelino is convinced Real are "weaker" when compared to last season's Double winners.
"It's difficult to assess which team has more chance [of winning LaLiga]. The ones that have come from furthest back are ourselves.
Marcelino admits their success has surprised him this season.
"[It's been] much better than we expected," he noted. "If they had told us that at Week 14 we would be where we are, we would all have signed up for it.
"We have done many things very well as a group. We are proud of this squad and are satisfied with their attitude and performance. One part of the euphoria around the club is due to the competitive level inside the team and our long-term performance."