Keylor Navas: 'Real Madrid must have character to keep going'

03 March, 2018, 00:22 | Author: Austin Daniel
  • Barcelona's high profile forwards Lio Messi and Ousmane Dembele

Real Madrid conceded a late Gerard Moreno goal to lose 1-0 at Espanyol.

Gerard Moreno scored the only goal of the game in the final minute of injury-time to give Espanyol their first victory over Real Madrid since 2007, a run that lasted 22 games. The result left Madrid in danger of losing third place to Valencia, which is two points behind going into its match at Athletic Bilbao on Wednesday.

It trails leader Barcelona by 14 points and languishes 7 points behind second-placed city rival Atletico, which was handicapped by a transfer ban last summer.

The defeat for Zinedine Zidane's charges is now their fifth of the La Liga season and could see them fall 17 points adrift of top spot if Barcelona beat Las Palmas on Thursday.

"We really didn't deserve to ship that goal", said the Frenchman. We didn't play our game or with substance in the second half.

Cristiano Ronaldo was among the players rested by Zidane for the trip to Espanyol, with the Real coach keeping one eye on next week's return leg against Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League round of 16. Luka Modric, Casemiro, Marcelo and Toni Kroos were all injured, so Isco and Marco Asensio were given chances in attack with Bale.

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Gareth Bale, who started as a lone striker up front, had the first chance for Madrid in the ninth minute with a header from just inside the box but Diego Lopez produced a fine save to deny the Welshman.

The LaLiga champions have not been at their best this season, and their domestic woes continued when they suffered a 1-0 defeat to Espanyol on Tuesday night.

Espanyol previously had not beaten Madrid in their own stadium, which opened in 2009. "This result restores our confidence after a series of poor results".

If we briefly look over their epic double-winning campaign, there were still a remarkable amount of games that needed the captain to come up with the goods, so maybe the writing was already on the wall in 2016/17 but was just ignored because silverware was won.

The Catalan club were coming off a 6-1 loss against Barcelona at the Camp Nou.

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