Despite being in a title race, Zinedine Zidane has his eyes firmly on the Champions League semi-final next week against Manchester City at the Santiago Bernabéu as the Real Madrid coach has decided not to risk Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema against Real Sociedad this week.Instead, Zidane hopes they’ll be at 100 percent for the match against Manchester City on Wednesday.
“The important thing is that they [Ronaldo and Benzema] recover as soon as possible in order to play on Wednesday,” he told reporters.
“Hopefully that happens.”
Zidane anticipates a tough game against Real Sociedad on Saturday but believes they can win if they defend properly.
“We know it will be a tough match, the stadium is intense,” he said.
“I’ve seen many games of La Real, we know it will be difficult, but we will play our own game as always.
“If we stick together in defence, we can win.”
Zidane said he has no doubts over the players’ mindset, claiming there is no complacency in the squad.
“The players show me every day that they understand the situation, they are fighting for every game, every minute.
“We will respond well.”
The Frenchman insisted that both James Rodriguez and Isco remain key to his plans ahead of the run in towards the end of the campaign.Both players have struggled to break into the side under Zidane, but they have a part to play with Los Blancos chasing both La Liga and the Champions League.
“Isco and James are two important players”, said Zidane.”
As a coach, you must look at the team, but every player is important ahead of the run-in.”