Zidane explains Ronaldo substitution amid latest Real Madrid setback

Oscar Cross
February 5, 2018

Real dropped two more points against Levante on Saturday, with Ronaldo being substituted by coach Zinedine Zidane.

Boateng who played 60 minutes for his side was very impressive on the day as they secured a point against the Spanish giants who have struggled in recent times.

Sergio opened scoring for Real on his return from injury in the 11th minute, guiding Toni Kroos' corner past Oier Olazabal.

Keylor Navas saved Morales' shot but the ball fell to Boateng, who calmly swept home. If we see that he plays and recovers quickly, he can be a different player and when he is at the top he really makes the difference.

The draw left Madrid in fourth with 39 points, 18 points behind leaders Barcelona.

After last week's impressive win at Mestalla, Zinedine Zidane is likely to again start Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema together in attack for just the second time since April.

Real Madrid have had a troubled season thus far, but a Los Blancos legend believes the club are still favourites to lift the UEFA Champions League this term.

Zidane's men must now regroup for the visit of Real Sociedad next weekend, which will be swiftly followed at the Bernabeu by a Champions League encounter against Paris Saint-Germain on February 13.

Speaking on BeINsports just after the final whistle, Madrid midfielder Casemiro had lamented two mistakes which had undone all the good work the team had put in over the rest of the 90 minutes.

He said: "Cristiano is f***** off like everyone because we all want to help as much as possible and when we cannot it's tough".

'We are disgusted with the result that was in our favour and we can get it today.

Carlos Bacca pulled one back for Villarreal by converting a penalty after Denis Cheryshev was fouled by Antonio Barragan.

Alaves dealt Celta Vigo its first loss in six rounds after it scored twice early to win 2-1 at home.

Celta was only able to respond late when Iago Aspas netted his 15th goal, trailing only Barcelona's Lionel Messi (20) and Luis Suarez (16).

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