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Real Madrid didn’t deserve to lose against Espanyol, says manager Zinedine Zidane

Zinedine Zidane was left cursing Real Madrid’s misfortune after Espanyol forward Gerard Moreno struck late to inflict a fifth Liga defeat this term on the Spanish champions.

football Updated: Feb 28, 2018 14:06 IST
Omnisport
Real Madrid,Espanyol,Zinedine Zidane
Zinedine Zidane reacts during Real Madrid’s match against Espanyol on Tuesday.(AFP)

Zinedine Zidane felt Real Madrid did not deserve to lose against Espanyol, despite admitting they were poor in the second half at the RCDE Stadium.

The champions saw their five-game winning run in all competitions emphatically ended when Gerard Moreno slammed home a dramatic late winner for lowly Espanyol.

The 1-0 defeat will lead to questions over Zidane’s decision to rest Cristiano Ronaldo, whileKarim Benzema started the midweek fixture on the bench.

READ | Real Madrid lose to Espanyol, fall 14 points behind Barcelona in La Liga

Benzema did come on as Madridpushedfor a late winner, only to be caught on the counter whenSergio Garcia’s crossallowedMoreno to score in the third minute of added time.

“We have missed a bit of everything.We started well and had chances to score, but the second half was worse,” Zidanesaid.

“Espanyol had few opportunities.It is a defeat that hurts and a bad result - I’m sorry for the players.

”Sometimes you do not understand football. We hada few moments inthe second half, but you have to accept the difficult times.

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“Whentime is nearly up and it’s 0-0, things can happen.We always look for victory and today we didnot achieve it.

“They also scored a goal in the last minute, but we should not think twice about that.We did not deservevictory, ordefeat. “

Zidane - who withdrew Gareth Bale with nine minutes remaining when the game was still scoreless - could see his side slip down to fourth in the table, if nearest rivals Valencia win away at AthleticBilbao on Wednesday.

They will look to get back to winning ways when they host Getafethis weekend, followed by ahuge Champions League clash with Paris Saint-Germain in the French capital next Tuesday.

First Published: Feb 28, 2018 11:12 IST