Ahead of Real Madrid’s first home game of the season against Valladolid, La Casa Blanca boss has sent a clear message to his three – Gareth Bale, James Rodriguez and Keylor Navas – outcasts players: I count on you.
Croatia international Keylor Navas has become unhappy with his role as second-choice goalkeeper at Real Madrid and is reportedly the subject of an interest from Paris St. Germain.
Zinedine Zidane, who prefers Thibaut Courtois as the No.1 this season, was asked at a pre-match press conference monitored by Soccernet.ng about the reported wishes of Keylor Navas to leave the club having been left on the bench against Celta Vigo.
“I can’t imagine the squad without him, he’s an important player; he always has been and always will be,” Zidane responded.
“I’m not contemplating that possibility. He hasn’t told me that he wants to leave, he’s here and he wants to play, which is very important for us.
“He’s always been a professional, we will have many games and I count on him and I will count on him. This is the message: I want Keylor to continue with us.”
Real Madrid kicked off their LaLiga Santander campaign away to Celta Vigo last weekend, a game they won 3-1 and will this weekend host Real Valladolid, the team’s first game at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu this season.
The French manager however hopes that he would see the best of Gareth Bale and James Rodriguez, both of whom were not expected to still be Madrid players at this stage of the transfer period.
“Before anything, we are hopeful. It’s a pleasure to be back at our stadium,” Zidane began.
“There are no tricky games because we know the rivals we are playing against, they’ve started well and a brave team, so we have to keep growing.”
“[Bale] played well [against Celta], not only in what we know he is good at, but also in defence,” the coach observed.
“Everyone will be important and I will count on them all.
“Tomorrow we will see if [James] starts, he’s the same good player that he was before he left [for Bayern Munich].”
A win for Los Blancos will see the Capital club maintain their lead at the top of the La Liga Santander.