Real Madrid: What Zinedine Zidane had to say after the 0-1 loss to Villarreal

MADRID, SPAIN - JANUARY 13: Zinedine Zidane, Manager of Real Madrid looks on prior to the La Liga match between Real Madrid and Villarreal at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on January 13, 2018 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by fotopress/Getty Images)
MADRID, SPAIN - JANUARY 13: Zinedine Zidane, Manager of Real Madrid looks on prior to the La Liga match between Real Madrid and Villarreal at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on January 13, 2018 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by fotopress/Getty Images) /

Real Madrid had chance after chance but was unable to find the back of the net in a 1-0 loss to Villarreal Saturday. Here is what manager Zinedine Zidane had to say after yet another disappointing defeat.

All quotes come via the Real Madrid official website.

Opening Statement

"“It is hard to explain. We tried everything. We had clear chances, but the ball would not go in. There is no explanation. This is a bad run that won’t stop, and it is not good for my players. I can’t criticise them. This is simply a bad moment and a tough defeat to take on board because we didn’t deserve that. Amidst all the negatives we have to look for some positives and on Thursday we have a chance to put things right.”“We have done everything possible to win but this is what we’re left with. The ball didn’t want to go in. We tried as best we could and I can’t really offer any explanation. We have games still to come and we can turn this around. We have gone through good times but now we are up against it and we know that. We must focus on what is going to change. We must keep working hard and win some games. Today was a hammer blow but we are going to turn things around on Thursday.”"

Are the players suffering from some kind of mental block?

“It might be a mental aspect that is stopping us from winning. When we are on a bad run there are always negatives to pick up on. We shot on target but didn’t score, when there were rebounds we were not on the end of them. This can wear you down mentally. We need to keep plugging away in search of the next win. We did everything possible to win and I honestly cannot reproach my players for their actions. I am not happy but nor do I feel beaten. This is another chance to show that we can turn this situation around. After a game like this, things are tough, but we can turn this around.”

“Everyone is entitled to their opinions, but we’ll keep on because we’ve still got something to prove. We’re here and don’t write Real Madrid off because there’s still life and hope in this team. There’s a game every three days in football. When things aren’t going well, you’ve got the chance to change it, and when they’re great, to keep that going. We’ll change it by sticking together and helping each other out. That’s what we need to do to get out of this rut.”

What is the solution?

“We know the situation and what we have to do. It’s tough because we’ve not been on a run like this before; it’s hard on the players because they fight, play well, and the ball just doesn’t want to go in. The great thing about football is the games keep coming and on Thursday we’ve got another 90 minutes to score and win the match. We can’t change today’s result. It hurts, it’s a real blow but we won’t change our mentality, which is move forward and keep fighting.”

Is the attack too predictable?

I don’t think so. We created chances and had many shots on goal. There are two teams in a football match and you’ve got to score one more than the opposition, which is what we tried to do. I’m not sure we’re predictable. We prepare well for the games but if the ball doesn’t find the back of the net, that’s nothing to do with being predictable.”

Possible changes to the squad?

“Nothing to do with it. It’s a negative result, and we can only change it by winning games. We have to pick up a good win and I hope that’ll come on Thursday.”

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My thoughts

This press conference is incredibly depressing. It is clear that Zidane has run out of things to say and excuses to make for his team’s shortcomings as of late.

His stubborn attitude toward signing players this month and his inability to recognize that Ronaldo is in a drought like we have never seen before could lead the Frenchman out the door in Madrid. While I think president Florentino Perez still has faith in Zidane and his ability, many of the fans are starting to doubt him.

This run of form is not all on Zidane, obviously, but his lack of answers and changes is worrisome.

I still like Zizou and I think he can continue to lead Real Madrid to success, however, he needs to find a way to motivate the players and boost their confidence. Right now, it is incredibly poor.

I am uncertain why Zizou doesn’t want to sign new players to the team as it can only benefit the team. Honestly, things can’t get much worse for this team right now.

Next: Three Takeaways from Real Madrid’s 1-0 Defeat to Villarreal

Being in danger of missing out on a Champions League spot is like facing relegation at Real Madrid. This team needs a momentum-building win and they need it ASAP.

Whether it is benching Ronaldo or Benzema or changing the midfield formation, something has to give. This team has no business struggling like they are.

Stay tuned to The Real Champs for more post-match coverage!