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Perez-real-madridIncredible whining press conference from Real Madrid president Florentino Pérez on Monday, where he confirmed his support for Rafa Benítez which has been called into question after the team’s humbling defeat against Barcelona on Saturday.

As we all know, the squad has been under increasing pressure since January of this year”, he said. He also mentioned the numerous injuries the team has struggled with in the opening months of this season.

“The solution to this is Rafa Benitez. We signed him to turn things around. We think he is the right person. But we must let him work — not listen to those making up lies that board doesn’t want him, or the players don’t want him.

marcaThese are troubled teams in Real Madrid. The appointment of Rafa Benítez was not met with approval by large sections of Real Madrid fans.

They have been waiting for Rafa to fail and they got their opening in Saturday’s El Clasico where Real where humbled by bitter rivals Barcelona at hone.

The mouthpiece of the football club, Marca, wrote on Sunday that the firing of Benitez seems to be a foregone conclusion after the 4-0 hammering that Barcelona gave then on Saturday.

Marca writes:

The Real Madrid board no longer have faith in the coach, who has lost the dressing room in less than three months.

luis-enrique-barcaReal Madrid coach Rafael Benitez insisted he is more worried about recovering his players’ confidence than being sacked after the Spanish giants were thrashed 4-0 at home by bitter rivals Barcelona on Saturday.

The former Liverpool and Chelsea manager has only been in charge for 16 games, but back-to-back defeats now leave Madrid six points behind Barcelona in the title race.

“Logically we are hurting. It hurts to lose and particularly to lose in that manner,” Benitez said. “We have lost three points in La Liga and nothing more. What worries me is the team recovering mentally before the next game.”

suarez-neymar-messiWhen Andres Iniesta’s screamer hit the back of Keylor Navas’ net on 53 minutes a beleaguered Rafa Benitez could be seen scribbling something down in his note pad – ‘3-0’ presumably.

Real Madrid had been taken apart by Barcelona with goals from Luis Suarez, Neymar and Iniesta. Lionel Messi had not needed to come off the bench such was their superiority, and there was still a fourth goal and a sending for Isco off to come.

benzema-prisonReal Madrid have released a statement about Karim Benzema’s legal situation with the French blackmail scandal. Here’s the translation for said statement.

Karim Benzema returned to training this evening at Real Madrid City after making a statement to the French authorities in the Versailles.

The Real Madrid C. F. president, Florentino Pérez, held a meeting with the player in which he gave him his full support and expressed his confidence that his actions were in good faith and that he is completely innocent.

Real Madrid left-back Marcelo is likely to miss out on the El Clasico after picking up a hamstring injury against Paris Saint-Germain on Tuesday night after just 32 minutes and both Rafa Benitez and Brazil coach Dunga are waiting to hear what the ramifications of the knock are.

Marcelo has played every minute of every league match for Madrid this season and Benitez realises how big a loss he will be. The manager said:

“He was playing a lot of games and we knew that anything could happen. We thought that we would have enough time to reach the international break.

calciopoliReal Madrid star Karim Benzema has been charged with conspiracy to blackmail and participating in a criminal group as part of an investigation over a sex tape involving France international teammate Mathieu Valbuena.

A statement from the Versailles Prosecutors Office said the alleged crimes for which he was being investigated could carry a prison sentence of at least five years.

“Real Madrid’s French striker has been charged with “involvement in an attempt to blackmail and participating with ‘wrongdoers’ to commit a crime which carries a minimum five-year prison sentence”, according to the statement.

neymar-barcelonaBrazilian striker Neymar said he is in the form of his life after netting twice as Barcelona eased past BATE Borisov 3-0 in the UEFA Champions League on Wednesday.

Neymar also set up Barcelona’s other goal on the night for Luis Suarez as the defending champions moved to within a point of sealing their place in the last 16. Suarez and Neymar have now combined for 18 of Barcelona’s last 21 goals since four-time FIFA World Player of the Year Lionel Messi suffered knee ligament damage nearly six weeks ago.

UEFA Champions League Trophy Tour 2008Gent claimed a famous first victory in the Champions League to move to within two points of second-placed Valencia in Group H.

In a section dominated by a Zenit side who qualified tonight, Hein Vanhaezebrouck’s spirited competition debutants made their mark thanks to Sven Kums’s cool-headed penalty four minutes into the second half.

From the first-half evidence it was hard to fathom how Gent – unbeaten leaders of Belgium’s First League – had managed only one point from their opening three Group H skirmishes, including a recent 2-1 Mestalla defeat. The early chances at the KAA Gent Stadium fell to Laurent Depoitre and Kenneth Saief, while visiting keeper Jaume Doménech produced a wonderful save from Kums although the referee’s whistle had already blown.

neymar-barcaNeymar and Luis Súarez continued their rich vein of form as Barcelona eased past a determined, organised BATE team 3-0 to stride to the brink of the UEFA Champions League knockout stage.

The title holders peppered the BATE goal before penetrating it. Sergei Chernik’s sharp one-on-one stop from Neymar, after a flowing four-man move, began the pattern of the Belarusians frustrating Barça. Luis Suárez squeezed an effort past the post, Adriano hit the same upright.