Madrid is going into tomorrow’s match against Alavés on a 3 game skid with 1 tie and 2 losses. Real has also not scored a goal in the past 3 matches. Fortunately for the whites, Barcelona has also been struggling. Nevertheless, Lopetegui will certaintly be under pressure to get a win and a better showing tomorrow afternoon, 18:30 CEST.
In today’s pre-match presser Lopetegui took some questions from the press:
Lopetegui – ”Our aims remain intact and we will improve. We’ve got the same number of points as the team top of LaLiga and in the Champions League we’re certain we can continue the same form we showed against Roma. We have to believe in what we’re doing and work on a game by game basis”.
“Our next challenge and our objective is Alavés, who are unbeaten in 6 games, are playing at home and flying high. They’re having a wonderful season, with great players and a top coach. I’m expecting a hugely demanding game against a team who get the very best out of what they’ve got and that is full of players at their peak at Alavés. They’ve got a real team ethic and we’ll have to perform very well to beat them”.
A big question after the Atleti match was Gareth Bale. The injury prone striker went off at the half and was not called up for Champions League duty. When asked about injuries Lopetegui responded:
“We’ve still got a few with injuries, particularly Marcelo and now Dani, who could be out for a few weeks. We’ve got Isco with appendicitis and a few other knocks, Bale, for example, but it’s nothing serious. We have to manage the situation and get through it. The more players we have available the better when it comes to making decisions”.
“Bale is a key player. He’s fine and he trained well. He felt some discomfort but picked it up in time before it became anything serious and he’s ready to play”.
When asked if he felt that there was a lack of respect for the club:
“This is Real Madrid. Expectations are high and we have to accept that. The important thing is how we’re feeling and the determination shown by the players. We know there will be spells where we have problems and we have to be able to overcome them. We have to look at the good points and correct elements which need work. We’ve got the right mentality and absolute confidence in every competition”.
I don’t see a clear victory tomorrow. This skid is reminiscent of previous years where Ligas have slipped away. If you want to try your luck on the match you can take advantage of the coral new customer offer.
Lopetegui has been doing a lot of player rotations, considerably more than you would expect at this point in the season. Benzema, despite not scoring a goal for several matches, is still getting the nod to start every match. With Cristiano gone the team really could use an all out striker. Mariano could be more suited and maybe it’s time to see what Vinicius Jr. can do. Alaves is coming in on fine form so it would be wise to start a strong eleven for this match.