Rafael Benitez
Rafa Benitez has been under scrutiny since his very first day at Real Madrid Getty

Manuel Garcia Quilon, the agent of Rafa Benitez, has denied the Real Madrid manager has received an ultimatum at the Santiago Bernabeu. Quilon added that the former Liverpool boss has a good relationship with his squad, despite reports he has lost key members of the dressing room including Cristiano Ronaldo, James Rodriguez and Toni Kroos.

Benitez's position at Real Madrid has been under scrutiny since day one, with some believing his defensive approach to the game does not fit in at the ten-time Champions League winners. The former Napoli and Chelsea boss has so far failed to prove the doubters wrong.

Los Blancos were eliminated from the Copa del Rey for fielding an ineligible player in Denis Cheryshev, while their La Liga campaign has seen them repeatedly stumble against the big sides, drawing with Atletico Madrid and losing to Sevilla, Villarreal and Barcelona.

Club president Florentino Perez handed Benitez the vote of confidence following a humiliating 4-0 home thrashing in the first El Clasico of the season, but the recent loss to Villarreal has seen his job become ever more at risk. Real currently sit five points behind Barcelona and their cross-city rivals Atletico.

Marca claimed earlier this week that Benitez's "credit is starting to run out" at the club, with the board already identifying club legend Zinedine Zidane as a replacement should they opt for imminent change.

AS also confirmed that Zizou, currently manager of Real's reserve team, is the chosen one for club officials. The French legend is seen as the man to restore dressing room harmony at the La Liga giants.

However, when asked about these reports, Benitez's agent responded: "Ultimatum? We don't know anything about that, no-one has formally communicated anything. Everything is speculation.

"He is keeping on working. Rafa has a correct relationship [with his players], both on a sporting and human level."

Los Blancos, meanwhile, have two theoretically winnable games against Rayo Vallecano and Real Sociedad in upcoming weeks, before a crunch clash with Gary Neville's Valencia on 3 January.