- Title: Zidane happy with preparations for Athletic Bilbao clash
- Date: 22nd October 2016
- Summary: MADRID, SPAIN (OCTOBER 22, 2016) (REUTERS) ***WARNING CONTAINS FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY*** STRIKER CRISTIANO RONALDO RUNNING WITH THE BALL REAL MADRID COACH ZINEDINE ZIDANE AND COACHING STAFF WATCHING TRAINING SESSION FORWARD GARETH BALE AND LEFT BACK MARCELO CHASING THE BALL, BALE AND PLAYMAKER JAMES RODRIGUEZ MIDFIELDERS TONI KROOS AND ISCO ALARCON DURING TRAINING SESSION, PLAYERS PASSING THE BALL MORE OF BALE, RODRIGUEZ, KROOS AND ALARCON AND OTHER PLAYERS DURING TRAINING REAL MADRID COACH ZINEDINE ZIDANE ARRIVING AT NEWS CONFERENCE (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) REAL MADRID COACH ZINEDINE ZIDANE SAYING: "The good thing is that we made a really good week. We have been able to work after Tuesday's match so we are good. We are really looking forward to play tomorrow's match. " NEWS CONFERENCE IN PROGRESS (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) REAL MADRID COACH ZINEDINE ZIDANE, ASKED ABOUT PERFORMANCE OF GARETH BALE, CRISTIANO RONALDO AND KARIM BENZEMA SAYS: "For me it's not like that. I always depend on all my players and we are lucky to have three phenomenal players and the rest whom are brilliant as well, and I have to make decisions. I'm aware of the importance of each player and what they give to the team. Besides, every match and every situation is different." NEWS CONFERENCE IN PROGRESS (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) REAL MADRID COACH ZINEDINE ZIDANE SAYING: "If everyone signs, I'm more than delighted. I have the best players and if everyone could sign for five or ten years, all of them, that would be perfect for me. And not just for me, I think the fans and all the people related to the club are really happy with the renovations." ZIDANE LEAVING
- Embargoed: 6th November 2016 13:38
- Keywords: Real Madrid Cristiano Ronaldo Athletic Bilbao Zinedine Zidane
- Location: MADRID, SPAIN
- City: MADRID, SPAIN
- Country: Spain
- Topics: Soccer,Sport
- Reuters ID: LVA0015535TMN
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane said on Saturday (October 22) that he values all the players in his squad and was reluctant to single any out.
Questions were being asked about the performance of Real Madrid's 'BBC' trio, Gareth Bale, Karim Benzema and Cristiano Ronaldo as reporters pursue any evidence of rivalry among the three. The trio have been singled out after Real's rivals Barcelona played Neymar, Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez as an attacking trident against other teams.
Real hammered Real Betis 6-1 last Saturday (October 15), and followed that with Tuesday's (October 18) 5-1 drubbing of Legia Warsaw in the Champions League.
Now Real prepare for Sunday's (October 23) La Liga match against Athletic Bilbao. They beat Bilbao 4-2 last time they met at the beginning of the year, and Zidane said he had high hopes after good performances in recent matches.
"The good thing is that we made a really good week. We have been able to work after Tuesday's match so we are good. We are really looking forward to play tomorrow," he said.
The Champions League match saw Gareth Bale score once while Cristiano Ronaldo assisted goals from Marco Asensio and Alvaro Morata.
Ronaldo's reputations for scoring, having notched eight in eight games in all competitions this season, including one in Saturday's 6-1 hammering of Real Betis, means questions are asked when he does not score in the Champions League.
This promped Zidane's remark that he valued the skills of every player equally and did not favour players.
"I always depend on all my players and we are lucky to have three phenomenal players and the rest whom are brilliant as well, and I have to make decisions. I'm aware of the importance of each player and what they give to the team. Besides, every match and every situation is different," he said.
La Liga is tight with four teams having won five of their eight matches so far. Real Madrid are currently second in the table, sharing 18 points with leaders Atletico Madrid, ahead on goal difference.
Barcelona are fourth with 16 points and Athletic Bilbao sixth with 15 points.
Bilbao, coached by Ernesto Valverde, played their Europa League match against Belgium's Genk on Thursday (October 20), losing 2-0.
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