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Zidane hits back at criticism over selection policy and tactics

“Everyone can talk about Legia...that we were disorganised. But if I had to, I would do the same thing again,” said Zidane, who also rejected criticism over sticking with Karim Benzema.

Zidane hits back at criticism over selection policy and tactics
JESUS ALVAREZ ORIHUELA DIARIO AS

Real Madrid - Leganés live

Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane has defended his selection policy and affirmed he would rather forget the chaotic draw with Legia Warsaw ahead of his side’s game against Leganés on Sunday.

Zidane stands by decisions 

Zidane has been subject to criticism in recent weeks for sticking with out-of-form French striker Karim Benzema in his starting line up ahead of super sub Álavaro Morata, and was also slammed for his tactics in the Champions League on Wednesday night.

However, during a press conference on Saturday, Zidane stood by his decisions over both selection and tactics, though admitted critics are entitled to their opinions.

Zinedine Zidane

“Everybody can say what they think,” said Zidane. “What I know is that I pick the team not to make one player or another happy. If a player plays ten games or he doesn’t, he’s never going to be happy with everything. I know that because I was a player.”

Zidane though may have been spared from making a difficult choice over his lineup on Sunday after Benzema was ruled out of the clash at the Bernabéu, leaving the door open for Morata to make his seventh start of the campaign.

The French coach did in fact chose to start with both Morata and Benzema in a four-man attack in Legia earlier this week, something which he was later condemned for after a dishevelled Madrid performance.

"I can't control the critics"

“Everyone can talk about Legia, that we had a fourth striker, that we were disorganised. But if I had to, I would do the same thing again,” stressed Zidane. “I would have liked us to have played well for 90 minutes to show we have the quality to play well for the full game, but I can’t control the critics.

“There will always be critics,” he continued. “What interests me is to forget this game because we have an important match [versus Leganés]. Football is like that, sometimes things don’t go well. It was a strange match. I’ve lived with critics for 30 years, that’s not going to change. The only thing I’m going to do is try to improve and better the team.”