Real Madrid suffered yet another defeat as they were defeated 1-0 by Leganes at Estadio Municipal de Butarque in the second leg of their Copa del Rey tie
However, fortunately for the European champions, their 3-0 victory in the first leg was enough for them to qualify for the quarterfinals. Martin Braithwaite’s strike in the 30th minute was the difference between the two sides on the night. Real Madrid have endured a really troublesome campaign so far.
Santiago Solari took over the reins after Julen Lopetegui was fired back in October. Although things have improved under Solari, they are nowhere near the standards that the Los Blancos have set over the course of the last decade or so. Madrid have won 13 of the games that Solari has overseen and they currently languish in the 4th spot in La Liga with 33 points, 10 adrift of leaders Barcelona. Real Madrid midfielder Casemiro, however, defended his side’s performance against Leganes,
“We lost the game but qualified, that’s what we wanted. If we talk about how we played, we lacked depth in the first half but got better in the second,” Casemiro said afterwards.
“We controlled the pace, their fans were boisterous but we had the game under control. We know there are no easy games, now we are concentrating on the weekend.”
“We always play to win, we are not in a good place, let’s be honest, but we’re working hard. We’re in the Champions League last 16, a bit far behind in LaLiga and now we’re into the next round of the Copa del Rey. Now whatever happens we just have to win, regardless of who we face.”
Isco, who seems to be out-of-favor under Solari, was handed a rare start. There has been a lot of speculation about the Spain midfielder’s future at the club. However, teammate Nacho Fernandez maintained that Isco was a key player for them,
“He’s a very important player for Real Madrid and continues to work hard to get back out there and display the confidence we all need, he’s got the backing of the whole squad. We need Isco to be at his best, and the same goes for all of our players.”
Real Madrid need to find their touch again as the knockout stages of the Champions league are fast approaching and this might just be their only chance of lifting a major trophy this season.