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Real Madrid’s heavy loss to Valencia highlights the club’s flawed summer transfer activity

Valencia recorded a 4-1 victory against Real Madrid at the Mestalla
Valencia recorded a 4-1 victory against Real Madrid at the Mestalla
ANALYST
Modified 10 Nov 2020, 11:38 IST
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Zinedine Zidane’s post-game conference said it all. The Real Madrid manager looked dejected as he addressed the media following his side’s 4-1 defeat at the hands of Valencia on Sunday.

The Frenchman started the press conference with a subtle apology before taking the blame for the humiliating loss which saw the Blancos slip to the fourth position on the La Liga table.

Zidane was quoted as saying:

"The fault is mine because I am the coach and I have to find the solution. I can't justify what happened. It's a bad day, there are no excuses. We must improve defensively.”
"I don't think Valencia have been tactically better than us. The only thing is that we started well and everything changed after the goal. 
"This is difficult to understand. But yes, the maximum responsibility is mine. We must find solutions after the goal they scored."

Indeed, Zidane is partly to blame for Real Madrid’s lackluster performance, having failed to improve his squad in the summer.

For the first time in many years, Real Madrid did not sign a single player in the summer window. Rather, the club allowed some of its prized first-team players to leave. The likes of Gareth Bale, James Rodrigues and Danny Ceballos were also allowed to leave without any replacements coming in.

It’s obvious that Real Madrid are now paying for those poor judgements. The team currently lacks squad depth while the quality of the squad has also diminished.

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Sergio Ramos might still have it in him as a 34-year-old but his central defensive partner, Raphael Varane, appears to be past his prime. The French center-back has been committing mistake after mistake but continues to play because there’s no one on the bench to wrestle the position from him.

On Sunday, Valencia exposed Real Madrid’s weaknesses which have been evident since the beginning of the season. Despite opening the scoring through Karim Benzema, Valencia came back strongly to win 4-1.

A hat-trick of penalties from Carlos Soler was sandwiched by an own goal by Varane to seal an emphatic result for the home side.

It’s okay that Zidane wants to take responsibility for the loss but how many times has he done that already this season?

The Frenchman has himself to blame, having consistently insisted that he is content with his squad despite the glaring imbalance and lack of quality.

Published 10 Nov 2020, 11:38 IST
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