Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane has asked Los Blancos fans to blame for him for the club’s worst game of the season after a 2-1 loss to Real Betis in La Liga on Sunday. The Frenchman added that his players gave their best but weren’t good enough.
Madrid fell behind to Sidnei da Silva’s stunning strike into the top corner but leveled via Karim Benzema’s penalty. Former Barcelona forward Cristian Tello struck in the 82nd minute to give Betis the win.
With the loss, Madrid stayed two points behind their rivals, who needed a Lionel Messi penalty to defeat Real Sociedad 1-0 on Saturday at Camp Nou. Los Blancos will be hoping to close the gap with 11 games remaining in La Liga, despite having triumphed in last week’s El Clasico.
Speaking during his post-match press conference on Sunday, Zidane accepted blame for the result and promised to work on the lapses discovered during the game.
“We didn’t get anything today, and I’m to blame for it. I have to look at what happened; we’re going to fight the league to the end,” Zidane said post-match.
“I am with my players till death. I am responsible here. We will analyze what happened and move on.
“We played badly, Many mistakes. We lacked everything, play, possession, aggression, our worst game of the season. Didn’t deserve to win. We can’t be happy. We started badly, and could not correct it. I’ve no explanation at the moment, we just lacked a bit of everything.
“I am to blame as motivation, This is my responsibility. We didn’t generate anything today. We’ve lacked everything, especially ball possession, we never lose so many balls, that’s been our main problem tonight.”
Zidane added that he will not blame his players for the loss, adding that they would be made aware of their deficiencies.
“I will defend my players, if I have something to say I will tell them,” he said.
“I don’t point fingers. We’re all in this together. None of us was good enough today.
“It wasn’t just defensively, but we were poor offensively and didn’t create any runs to disturb their back line. What irritated me most was how we lost the ball so many times.”
Real Madrid next host Eibar in La Liga on Friday night before backing up against Manchester City on March 17 in the second leg of their Champions League last-16 tie with Los Blancos losing 2-1 in the first leg.