Madrid missed chance after chance in the first half and paid the price in the second 45 minutes when Villarreal raced away to score the winner with three minutes left. Barcelona could be 19 points clear of them if they beat Real Sociedad tomorrow.
In a indication of how bad things are for Zidane, Madrid fan site Marca has turned against the coach, as the headline oafter the Villarreal defeat was:
Zidane’s stubbornness punishes Real Madrid
Criticism has been leveled at Zidane for his tactics, especially his substitutions, as well as his refusal to address the weaknesses in his squad during this transfer window.
Alvaro Morata, James Rodriguez, Pepe all left in the summer and none have been sufficiently replaced, especially the attacking duo
Zidane is absolutely convinced that when Sergio Ramos and Karim Benzema return from injuries, his team will be at full strength and that while the league has gone, he believes that his side is capable of winning a third successive Champions League.
Zidane has admitted his new contract, which he agreed to in September, ‘means nothing’.
‘I just go game to game, year to year,’ said Zidane. ‘I cannot think two or three years down the line, as I know how it is here, even having a contract, which means nothing.
Rafa Benitez was sacked just over two years ago after taking just 37 points from the first 18 games of the La Liga season. This season, Madrid have taken just 32 points from their 18 games.
Would Florentino Pérez really fire a manager who has won 8 trophies in a little over 2 years? Absolutely.
Perez is ruthless when it comes to firing managers and if he decides to make a change ahead of the PSG game in a month’s time, the timing could depend on the upcoming Copa del Rey quarterfinal against Leganes and Real’s next two La Liga games, at home to Deportivo La Coruna and away at Valencia.
Do you think that Zinedine Zidane will be the Real Madrid manager when the Champions League match-up with PSG comes around?