Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane has refused to admit a crisis at the Santiago Bernabeu despite Los Blancos extending their winless streak to four games with a 1-1 draw against Eibar on Sunday (2 October). Yet, the French boss received three new injury concerns in his side after Karim Benzema, Raphael Varane and James Rodriguez joined Marcelo, Luka Modric and Casemiro on the busy treatment table.
Los Blancos host Eibar had hopes to secure their first victory in four games following three disappointing draws against Villarreal, Las Palmas and Borussia Dortmund. However, Real Madrid only managed to get a point after Gareth Bale cancelled Fran Rico's early goal.
Zidane admitted his frustration about the situation as Real Madrid conceded the leadership of La Liga to Atletico Madrid on goal difference as their neighbours beat Valencia 2-0. Yet, he refused to believe his side are in crisis as he backed them to find a solution after the international break, with a La Liga trip to Real Betis coming before a Champions League clash with Legia Warsaw.
"Not a crisis. We're in October and we mustn't lose our heads. There's something wrong because we've drawn three in a row in the league," Zidane admitted. "When you've got the lead after the start we had to the season then it's tough to take. I'm not going to lose my head but it's tough. We need to work harder and show more intensity at the beginning of games like we've done very often, but we're struggling to replicate that lately."
"Anything can happen in a match. We're not doing enough at the start in order to win the game. If you concede it's difficult because they are aggressive opponents who sit back and defend. We have to show more intensity from the start, we need to analyse things and the players are keen to do that. Perhaps we have to bring more intensity to the training sessions."
The situation doesn't looks better on the injury table though. Modric, Casemiro, Marcelo and Fabio Coentrao were unavailable to face Eibar due to different problems while James joined them during the warm-up. Yet, Zidane revealed that he was also forced to replace Benzema and Varane at half-time as after the French duo picked up some knocks.
"Both of them picked up small knocks," Zidane confirmed. "Karim felt a twinge in his knee. We'll have to wait for the scan. Varane took a real blow on the back of his thigh. We hope he'll be back fit soon and it's nothing more than a knock."
Real Madrid are yet to give an update on the duo but did revealed that James suffered a muscle strain, leaving on doubt whether the Colombian international will be available to represent his national team in the forthcoming World Cup qualifiers against Paraguay and Uruguay.
"Following tests carried out today on James Rodríguez, he has been diagnosed with a grade one muscle strain in the soleus muscle of his left leg," the club confirmed.