Kroos backs Zidane to find solution to inconsistent Madrid's problems

By Sports Desk November 13, 2020

Toni Kroos is confident Zinedine Zidane will turn Real Madrid's form around – just as he has done in the past.

LaLiga champions Madrid have endured a difficult start to the new season, winning just six of their 11 games in all competitions.

There were shock back-to-back home defeats to Cadiz and Shakhtar Donetsk, while Los Blancos were thrashed 4-1 at Valencia prior to the international break.

Madrid have also landed big wins against rivals Barcelona and Inter, though, and midfielder Kroos acknowledges consistency is a big issue.

"It is true that we are missing something. It is not a secret. Everyone can see it," he told Marca. "We need to be consistent.

"If you see the results, there are two good, one bad, two good, one bad. We have to do better.

"You watch some games and you realise that it can be done better, [you watch] against Barcelona, ​​the first half against Inter.

"Clearly we can improve, but we lack continuity. If we did well against Barcelona, ​​we also have to play like this against Cadiz or Shakhtar at home.

"There is a lot of difference – sometimes very good and sometimes very bad. We must improve if we want to win something."

Zidane took responsibility for the Valencia reverse, the first time Madrid had conceded four goals in a league match since a 5-1 Clasico defeat in October 2018 that cost Julen Lopetegui his job.

The conversation around Zidane has not yet reached the same fever pitch, but Kroos knows the Frenchman will be aware of the need to deliver results.

"He knows that, at Real Madrid, if you don't have the results and you don't meet expectations, there are discussions," Kroos said. "That is why we are at this club. It is normal.

"With Zidane, we have already lived through times like this and we usually come out of bad spells. A few weeks ago, after losing to Cadiz and Shakhtar, we went to Barcelona and played a great game.

"We live like this and the coach is the first to know what happens at this club if you don't have results.

"In the end, what we have left is to improve and try to win games. The coach will find the solution."

Related items

  • Rumour Has It: Man Utd face battle for Torres, Lautaro-Inter talks begin Rumour Has It: Man Utd face battle for Torres, Lautaro-Inter talks begin

    Where will Pau Torres play next season?

    The Villarreal defender is reportedly wanted by Premier League giants Manchester United, who are set to face the LaLiga outfit in the Europa League final.

    But Napoli are also eyeing the Spain international.

     

    TOP STORY – UNITED FACE FIGHT FOR VILLARREAL DEFENDER

    Manchester United could face a battle from Napoli to sign Villarreal centre-back Pau Torres, according to Gazzetta dello Sport.

    United are looking to bolster their defence amid links to Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos and team-mate Raphael Varane, as well as Sevilla's Jules Kounde.

    Torres has emerged as a serious option, though Napoli are also reportedly interested, with star Kalidou Koulibaly's future uncertain.

     

    ROUND-UP

    - Lautaro Martinez and Inter have opened dialogue over a contract renewal, says the front page of Monday's Gazzetta dello Sport. Martinez has previously been tipped to join Barcelona, while Madrid have reportedly emerged as suitors.

    - L'Equipe claims Lyon captain Memphis Depay will complete his move to Barca in June. It comes as Barca look to seal other free-transfer details for Manchester City defender Eric Garcia and Liverpool's Georginio Wijnaldum. Barca have also been linked with Borussia Dortmund sensation Erling Haaland and City's soon-to-be free agent Sergio Aguero.

    Roma have no interest in signing Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon. The Italy great will leave Turin at the end of the season, but it will not be for the Italian capital, reports Calciomercato.

    - According to Calciomercato, Mauro Icardi has been tipped to swap Paris Saint-Germain for Juventus. With Cristiano Ronaldo and Paulo Dybala linked with Juve exits, former Inter captain Icardi could return to Italy.

    Atalanta are set to trigger their option to sign Cristian Romero from Juve, claims Fabrizio Romano. The defender has been scouted by United.

  • Zidane not focused on Madrid future: 'At the end of the season we will see' Zidane not focused on Madrid future: 'At the end of the season we will see'

    Zinedine Zidane insisted the only focus for Real Madrid should be their pivotal LaLiga finale against Villarreal, rather than his future at the club.

    Los Blancos remain in the hunt to retain their league title thanks to a 1-0 win away at Athletic Bilbao on Sunday, defender Nacho Fernandez the unlikely hero with the only goal of the game.

    It appeared at one stage as if the reigning champions would be in pole position with one more round of fixtures to play, only for Atletico Madrid to produce an impressive comeback at home against Osasuna.

    A late Luis Suarez winner at the Wanda Metropolitano has Diego Simeone's side two points ahead of their city rivals in the table.

    Reports in the Spanish media on the day of the Athletic game said Zidane had informed the Madrid squad he will be leaving at the end of the campaign, but the Frenchman refused to be drawn on his situation.

    "How am I going to tell my players that I am leaving now, when we are putting everything on the line?" Zidane said in his post-match press conference.

    "When you say things from the outside, you can say whatever you want. I am not ever going to say that to my players.

    "At the end of the season we will see, but now I am in this and am focused on the last match.

    "We cannot talk constantly about my future; the most important thing is the last match that we have to play."

    Zidane opted to retain the same forward line that started the 4-1 win over Granada on Thursday, meaning Eden Hazard once again had to settle for a place on the bench.

    The Belgium international was introduced in the 77th minute in place of Rodrygo, with Zidane insisting it was simply a selection call made by himself, rather than any particular issue.

    "Nothing has happened with Hazard, it is just that others are playing at the moment," he said.

    "I have to choose the 11 and nothing more. He is contributing like everyone else.”

    While Madrid host Villarreal in the Spanish capital next Sunday, Atletico have a trip to relegation-threatened Real Valladolid.

    Zidane's side are on a 17-game unbeaten run in LaLiga, their best streak in a single campaign during his two stints in charge.

  • 'Impossible' for Barca to play without Messi, claims Koeman 'Impossible' for Barca to play without Messi, claims Koeman

    Ronald Koeman had an eye-catching statement about the importance of Lionel Messi to Barcelona as he was quizzed on both his own future and that of his captain.

    Barca can no longer win LaLiga following Sunday's results, with Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid both victorious elsewhere as the Blaugrana lost 2-1 at home to Celta Vigo.

    Atleti's triumph meant Barca would not have been able to finish this season as champions regardless of their result against Celta, though Koeman's side could not deliver anyway.

    Although they led through Lionel Messi in the first half, Santi Mina netted before the break and then late on to seal a fine victory for the Galicians.

    It was a familiar sinking feeling against Celta, who have now beaten Barca five times since the start of the 2014-15 season – tied with Madrid for the most in that time.

    However, this campaign has been particularly disappointing at Camp Nou, with a seventh loss the Blaugrana's most in a league season since nine in 2007-08. That was also the last time Barca had fewer than their current 76 points after 37 games (64).

    Questions about Koeman's job security are to be expected then, but he responded on Sunday: "I'm not going to answer that."

    Of greater concern to Barca fans, though, will be a decision on Messi's next move, with the legendary number 10 out of contract for the second consecutive close-season.

    His header against Celta made this the 300th different LaLiga game he has scored in – Madrid great Raul is a distant second on 186 – while he tallied 30 league goals for the ninth time in 12 campaigns.

    Since the turn of the year, no player in Europe's 'top five' leagues has been involved in more than Messi's 31 goals (23 goals, eight assists) and Barca are of course keen to keep their captain.

    Asked if Messi was appearing at Camp Nou for the last time, Koeman said: "Hopefully not.

    "He is still the best in the world and has also shown today that it is impossible to play without him.

    "He has scored 30 goals in LaLiga and has given us many points in LaLiga. It's a question for Leo. For my part and the club, let's hope he stays with us.

    "Because if Leo's not here, we have a doubt who's going to score the goals."

    Left-back Jordi Alba was offered the same question and replied: "Let's hope not, although it's a decision [Messi] has to make."

    Alba appeared to excuse Koeman, meanwhile, as he reflected on a tough run-in for Barca, who have won only one of their past five matches.

    "We haven't won four games," he said. "It's a shame. We players are to blame. We have to give a good image in Eibar [in the final game], give it our all."

    The coach added: "The problem wasn't today. We had the opportunity against Granada [another 2-1 defeat] and today we have lost in a similar way. That's how we feel.

    "It has to be accepted because, in the end, the champion will just be the champion. And we won't have done enough."

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.