Injuries were the talk of the day as Zinedine Zidane addressed the media for the first time since the international break. Sergio Ramos was the subject of several of the questions and Zidane was asked about the centre-back’s latest issue and if it was a mistake for him to go away with the Spanish national team.
Zidane replied: “He was fine to go with Spain. It’s true he didn’t play with us just before the break, but there were three or four days after that and he felt better and went with his country. I think that was normal. He was select-able. He played a little and then he felt something, a small injury. Nobody is to blame. Not the national team, nor Real Madrid. Things like this have happened a lot for us and for other teams this season. Injuries are a part of football that we don’t like, but they happen. But, nobody is to blame here. We just want Sergio to recover as soon as possible, knowing the player and captain he is. He wants to play.”
Zidane was also asked once again about Ramos’ contract situation, replying: “We want him to stay. That’s my feeling as a coach, given all he’s done and what he represents and how he is as a player.”
The coach insisted throughout the press conference that he want to talk about the Saturday match against Eibar, getting a little angry when asked about Erling Haaland and Mino Raiola. To that, he replied: “I’m tired of saying the same. He’s not my player. I’m not going to say anything about everything going on outside. What interests me is tomorrow’s match. I’m tired of saying it, but if someone else asks me about another player then I’ll reply the same way. So save your questions to ask a good question about football. I say this because it’s true. My work and what we do is the day-to-day work that we’re doing and the matches. With what will happen next year, I don’t know.”
Speaking about the Eibar game, Zidane said: “You speak to me abut Liverpool and Barcelona, but we have a match tomorrow. I’m not looking beyond tomorrow’s match and the players neither. Tomorrow’s match will dictate the other things that follow. We must be prepared for this match at 16:15 tomorrow. We’re happy to come back and compete again. We know all these matches are important. We have 15 matches left. 15 finals. We want to go to the end, starting with tomorrow’s match. It’ll be a very intense match. Eibar will come here to play their best.”
Finally, he also provide an update on Eden Hazard, who is back in training. On the Belgian, Zidane said: “We don’t have a plan. We’re going day to day with him. We won’t force anything. The important thing is for him to be good and he’s doing better. I’m not going to say if he’ll be back in five days, one week or 10 days. If he’s back in three days then that’s better for us. If he’s back in 10 days, then we’ll see.”