Real Madrid

Isco: "Behind the striker is where I feel most comfortable"

The Real Madrid midfielder thrived in the central attacking-midfield position during the derby win over Atletico, a change made possible by Zidane's shift from a 4-4-3 to a 4-2-3-1.

Isco: "Behind the striker is where I feel most comfortable"

Isco, who was hailed for his magisterial performance in Real Madrid’s 3-0 demolition of Atletico Madrid in the last ever LaLiga derby at the Calderón, has said the place that he was able to employ on the field on Saturday night is his best-preferred position as a footballer.

Change of formation

After injuries to strikers Karim Benzema and Álvaro Morata in the run up to the game, coach Zinedine Zidane opted for a 4-2-3-1 formation – a shift away from the Frenchman’s habitual 4-3-3 set up which allowed Isco to slot in just behind striker, Cristiano Ronaldo.

The Malagan ‘magician’ – as he is known to his teammates – clearly relished the role which he has rarely been able to fulfill under Zidane and put in an eye-catching performance as a result.

“[This position] is where I feel most comfortable,” said Isco after the game. “But I don’t want to make that an excuse. I try to always do the best I can [wherever I play].”


Isco wins back fan support 

Isco has won back the support of the Madrid faithful and convinced Zidane with his performances in recent weeks. This comes off the back of an uncertain summer, where at one stage it looked assured that he’d be leaving the club. Isco was also booed off the Bernabéu field in the game versus Eibar earlier on in the campaign after an insipid team display.

4-2-3-1 the future?

However the 25-year old has buckled down and found his way back in the first-team since then. With the derby not only Isco’s best performance of the season but also Real Madrid’s, it begs the question if we could be seeing more of the 4-2-3-1 formation from now on with Isco playing in his most favoured attacking-midfield function.