Sevilla-Real Madrid: Lopetegui on Isco, Carvajal, Puskás Award...
Real Madrid head coach Julen Lopetegui spoke to the media on Tuesday lunchtime ahead of his side's midweek LaLiga fixture away to Sevilla.
Real Madrid head coach Julen Lopetegui has looked ahead to Wednesday's LaLiga clash at Sevilla (22:00 CEST), in a pre-match press conference also dominated by Monday night's FIFA Awards and Isco's diagnosis with acute appendicitis, which is set to rule the midfielder out for around a month.
Here are some of Lopetegui's key quotes:
Isco ruled out with acute appendicitis:
"He was feeling discomfort when he came in [for training] this morning, and it's appendicitis. We wish him all the best and a speedy recovery. Every time a player is ruled out it's bad news, [but] we just have to dust ourselves down and focus on who'll take his place. I have complete faith in the squad at my disposal."
Have you spoken to Isco?
"I haven't managed to speak to him. He's about to go into surgery. Hopefully it's a smooth process and he can get back into shape as quickly as possible."
Is Dani Carvajal out of this weekend's Madrid derby against Atlético?
"We'll see. He had a strain that hasn't progressed as we'd hoped, so we'll have to wait and see. He's out of this game [against Sevilla]. It's the type of injury that you have to play by ear."
Do you have a right-back replacement in mind for the Sánchez-Pizjuán?
"Yes, I do. You've asked me if I've got something in mind, not whether I can tell you what that [solution] is. I'm not going to tell you."
"They're a very good side who are well coached and have players who have adapted very well to [Pablo] Machín's system. They have a range of attacking alternatives and have the wherewithal to make life difficult for anyone."
Would you like to win FIFA's The Best Men's Coach award?
"It's not something that particularly motivates me. I have a different opinion to the media about individual awards."
Were you surprised that Gareth Bale didn't win the FIFA Puskás Award for his 2017/18 Champions League final overhead kick?
"I'm not attracted by [individual] awards, but if they're there then I obviously prefer them to go my players. I'd have preferred it, but it's not something I feel strongly about..."
Attacks on VAR in Barcelona-based media:
"I'm not going to judge the opinions of others. It's clear that VAR helps to clear up decisions where there's doubt. Perfection doesn't exist, so it's obviously not going to be a cure-all solution. But it's a system that improves on what we had before."