International

Madrid seek Clasico redemption

2015-11-27 10:47
Sergio Ramos
Sergio Ramos

Cape Town - Real Madrid will be hoping a change of scenery provides an upturn in fortunes when they travel to Basque minnows Eibar's 6 000 capacity Ipurua on Sunday aiming to make amends for their 4-0 humiliation by Barcelona.

Club president Florentino Perez insisted he still has full confidence in coach Rafael Benitez despite both being targeted by the Madrid fans with calls to resign last weekend.

That confidence was unlikely to have been assured, though, by a nervous final 15 minutes in Ukraine on Wednesday as Madrid slipped from cruising into a 4-0 lead away to Shakhtar Donetsk to holding on for a 4-3 win.

Benitez made a series of changes in Lviv with Brazilian midfielder Casemiro one of those to come in to add extra bite to the midfield.

And he insists they must look ahead in trying to close the six-point gap to Barca at the top of the table rather than dwelling on the problems on and off the field over the past week.

"The defeat to Barcelona is in the past, we need to look forward. Now we have a tough game away from home," he said

"I am here for what Benitez tells me to do, he is a great coach. We are with him, with the president and the fans. Staying together I am sure we will win."

However, Madrid can expect an extremely tricky test against an Eibar side that are surpassing all expectations on just their second season in the top flight and currently sit sixth.

"It is difficult for any team to play at Ipurua. We are playing really well and have the confidence that we can get something positive from the game," Eibar midfielder Adrian Gonzalez told the club's website.

Madrid have mounting injury problems in defence as Raphael Varane came off against Shakhtar with a hamstring problem, while Sergio Ramos and Marcelo are also out.

Isco is banned after his frustrated kick out at Neymar last weekend. However, Eibar are also without one of their key creators through suspension in Keko Gontan.

Read more on:    real madrid  |  la liga  |  soccer
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