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Zinedine Zidane and Luis Enrique more at fault than their players Latest News Spanish La-Liga 

Zinedine Zidane and Luis Enrique more at fault than their players

In his latest column, Guillem Balague reflects on Real Madrid's struggles, Barcelona's mistakes against Celta Vigo, Atletico Madrid's change of approach and answers your questions…

Following their 1-1 home draw with Eibar at the weekend, Real Madrid have lost six points in their last three league games and have drawn four consecutive games in all competitions. 

Zinedine Zidane says the team is not in crisis but it looks very much like the kind of results that could end up in a crisis. We will have to see how the players react. I am sure Real Madrid will start winning soon but it would be good if they analysed closely why this is happening.

If you listen to Zidane, it's very difficult to agree with him. He says the team lacks intensity, they start the games badly and it has nothing to do with how well or badly they play. I think it has everything to do with that.

At the weekend, because James Rodriguez got injured in the warm-up, they ended up with Isco, Mateo Kovacic and Toni Kroos in midfield. With that midfield, who can keep the ball and pass it around, you would expect a team to control the game and keep possession. Instead they ended up putting 30 crosses into the box.

I don't think anybody knows what Real Madrid are playing at, what style they have, what they are trying to do, and that points directly at the manager.

Zidane has been good in the short competition of the Champions League – no doubt helped by the draw last season – but Real Madrid always compete well in the short competitions. In the long term you have to deal with managing the egos, rotating the side and giving them more collective, tactical answers. He hasn't done that.


The team hasn't got enough of them, that would suggest their work in training is not detailed enough and not tactical enough. As we said at the beginning of the season it might well prove the downfall of Zidane in the medium term.

Yes, Casemiro and Luka Modric are missing, but it is unbelievable that with two players out they cannot beat a team like Eibar or Las Palmas. What's worse is that Zidane said they studied the goal that Eibar scored, but the team had not reacted to it. Why didn't they? Are they too relaxed with his approach?

There are a lot of things to point out as a head coach that doesn't get the team tense enough at the start of the game. His own words. When they concede first they always react because they have players with the winning personality, but they should come out with more tension and a better mental disposition than they have at the moment.

It must be said that Eibar were fantastic, they played with so much order and everybody knew what they had to do. They had more shots on target than Real by four to three and there was a moment in the game that showed the calmness and clear heads of the Eibar players. In the 89th minute Real were putting a lot of pressure on and instead of defending in their own box there was a cross and Cristiano Ronaldo was offside because they had kept the line so tight.

That is very difficult to do when you are at the Santiago Bernabeu and it's 1-1 and any mistake can cost you. That shows how much they believe in the ideas of the coach and how hard they work to get it right.

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