Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane has admitted that his team is in a “delicate situation” heading into Sunday evening’s La Liga ‘El Clasico’ at home to hated rivals Barcelona.
The match is not only the latest edition of the greatest rivalry in club football, but a key clash in the title race: Barcelona enjoy a two-point lead at the top of the table over Los Blancos and a win for them would extend Los Blancos’ recent run of poor form and push the Catalan side five points clear.
Real come into the clash on the back of a 2-1 home loss at the hands of Manchester City in the UEFA Champions League this past midweek, while they are also set to be without injured forwards Marco Asensio and Eden Hazard plus the suspended Rodrygo.
“This is a delicate time for us because we have not won the last three games in our stadium, but we know things like this can happen and we have to keep a positive mindset,” Zidane told a news conference, as quoted by the Daily Mail [https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-8059511/Zinedine-Zidane-admits-Real-Madrids-season-brink-collapse-ahead-El-Clasico.html ].
“We will only come out of this situation by staying strong and by not listening to what people say about us.
“We will need our fans on our side from the first to last minute. I can understand why our fans are upset but we need them and they need us and at the very least we will give everything on the pitch.”
Zidane’s team were recently on an unbeaten run of 21 matches, although the French coach warned last month that it would only take a couple of bad results for him to be back in the firing line.
“I said if we lost two games I would get criticised and that is what is happening. All I can do is keep fighting with my players,” he added.
“My players are the best around and we’re going to try and turn things around. It’s a delicate situation but we’re going to try and win something.”