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‘I take responsibility, whatever has to happen will happen’ – Zidane says after Real Madrid 2-1 humiliation by Alcoyano

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Zidane has insisted his players still believe in him after Real Madrid were humiliated by third division outfit, Alcoyano in Copa del Rey last-32 defeat.

Zinedine Zidane’s side took the lead through defender Eder Militao but Jose Solbes took the tie to extra time.

Alcoyano – who play in Segunda Division B – had Ramon Lopez sent off for a second booking but earned a famous win when Juanan stole in at the near post.

Zinedine Zidane insisted his players still believe in him after Real Madrid suffered an embarrassing defeat by third-tier side Alcoyano in the Copa del Rey on Wednesday.

Real Madrid have now won only once in their last five games, with an extraordinary loss heaping more pressure on Zidane.

Asked if he still had the backing of the players, Zidane said, “Yes I believe so, you have to ask them. We’ve done good things this season, apart from the last four games. Now we have La Liga and the Champions League and we have to work. Whether my message gets through, you have to ask them, I can’t answer that.”

“I take responsibility and whatever has to happen will happen,” Zidane said.

Club legend Zidane has won three Champions League titles as a manager but is under pressure, with his side four points behind La Liga leaders Atletico Madrid – who have two games in hand.

Real are 19-time winners of the Copa del Rey, but have not lifted it for seven years and have only won it twice since 1993.

Incredibly, this is the fifth time a team from the third tier has eliminated them since 2001.

Real were without captain Sergio Ramos – who is out of contract this summer and could leave the club after 16 years – as Zidane made nine changes from the team who lost to Athletic Bilbao in the Super Cup.

Real Madrid have now won only once in their last five games, with an extraordinary loss heaping more pressure on Zidane.

Zidane took responsibility for the defeat.

Zidane rotated his starting line-up but a team that included the likes of Marcelo, Isco, Casemiro and Vinicius Junior should have had enough to beat opponents sitting fourth in their division in Segunda B.

And when Zidane threw on the likes of Eden Hazard, Karim Benzema and Toni Kroos as substitutes to put the game to bed, the opposite happened, as Alcoyano, a man down, scored the winner, Juanan diverting in at the near post to pull off an incredible upset.

Alcoyano have not graced Spain’s top flight since 1951 and their El Collao stadium holds less than 5,000 spectators. The only shame here was their fans were not able to see it.

But the team that finished against Alcoyano still contained Karim Benzema, Eden Hazard, Marcelo, Casemiro and Toni Kroos.

FP/BBC

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