Sport Sorry Zizou, but it's time to worry about Real Madrid after another shambolic Champions League loss to Shakhtar Donetsk

05:30  02 december  2020
05:30  02 december  2020 Source:   sportingnews.com

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Sorry , Zizou , but it ' s time to worry about Real Madrid after another shambolic Champions League loss to Shakhtar Donetsk . " It ' s all messed up, this season we're struggling to score goals," he said after the game. " It ' s not a physical issue. I'm fine but when you lose it ' s all negative.

It is true that it is a bad streak in terms of results, but we must continue. Today was a final, we prepared very well, but we know there is a game to go and we have to win and that' s it ." After their defeat to Shakhtar , Madrid have conceded nine goals in five Champions League group-stage games, their

The cracks in Zinedine Zidane's usually stoic demeanour in press conferences began to show last Saturday week.

"Don't you guys worry," he told reporters after a disappointing 1-1 draw with Liga rivals Villarreal. "Carry on with what you are doing and I will keep on working."

The frustration was understandable. Zidane is the man that led Madrid to three consecutive Champions League titles. He deserves time, and respect.

However, the Madrid-based press pack are entitled to worry; the club's fans even more so. Since snapping at concerned journalists on November 21, Madrid's performances have only worsened.

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Shakhtar Donetsk pulled off a stunning Champions League double over Real Madrid as they beat Zinedine Zidane's men 2-0 in Kiev to leave the Spanish I love Zidane soo much but I think it ' s time to part ways. Way too many humiliations in a season, somehow we are worse this season than 2018/19.

Real Madrid take on Shakhtar Donetsk away at 5:55pm in the Champions League . Follow Sportsmail's KISHAN VAGHELA for live Champions League coverage of Real Madrid vs Shakhtar It ' s decision time in the Champions League this week as Europe's finest scramble to book their

They may have triumphed at Inter last week but that game was gifted to them by the stupidity of Arturo Vidal, who earned himself a senseless first-half red card for dissent.

On Saturday, Madrid were beaten at home by mid-table Alaves, meaning the Spanish title holders have now gone three games without a win in La Liga.

Now they've suffered an even more devastating defeat, losing 2-0 to Shakhtar Donetsk, leaving their hopes of qualifying for the Champions League last 16 hanging in the balance.

Zidane may well claim that Madrid had more of the ball and created more chances but such excuses just won't cut it.

Eden Hazard and Sergio Ramos were significant absentees but a club of Real's resources shouldn't be relying on two players to defeat this version of Shakhtar. Remember, the Ukrainians hadn't scored a Champions League goal since winning in Madrid on matchday one.

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Real Madrid ' s hopes of a 14th Champions League title are on thin ice following a 2-0 defeat to Shakhtar A Shakhtar counter-attack looked to have been snuffed out by the Real defence with Ferland It would prove to be the knockout blow, as Real Madrid slumped their way through the final

Shakhtar Donetsk are the Champions League 's miraculous refugee club who continue to thrive Shakhtar have not played in Donetsk since 2014 after Russia's de-facto invasion But they won the Ukrainian Premier League last season for the third time running It ’ s a great stadium and we have great fans we can’t do anything about it. We are not supported

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They'd also been thoroughly humiliated by Borussia Monchengladbach in their last two games, losing 6-0 at home to the Germans and 4-0 away. Yet Madrid, with Karim Benzema back in the starting line-up, carried very little attacking threat at the Kiev Olympic Stadium.

a female football player on a field: Real Madrid Shakhtar 2020 © Provided by Sporting News Real Madrid Shakhtar 2020

Truth to be told, once they conceded, they never really looked like recovering. In fact, there was a certain inevitability about Shakhtar punishing them again on the break.

Madrid's arguably surprising Liga triumph last season was founded upon excellent defending but, as recent results have underlined, if you take Sergio Ramos out of the back four, the Spanish champions are always prone to collapse.

Certainly, Raphael Varane looks utterly lost without his central defensive partner and the World Cup winner was again found wanting for Dentinho's 57th-minute opener in Ukraine.

Gladbach before the key game against Donetsk

 Gladbach before the key game against Donetsk For Borussia Mönchengladbach, the most important, but also the most dangerous of the three Champions League games still outstanding in the preliminary round is on Wednesday. © Federico Gambarini / dpa With a win against Donetsk, Gladbach has a great chance of wintering in Europe. The leader of group B meets Shakhtar Donetsk (6:55 p.m. / DAZN) and can take a big step towards participating in the knockout round of the premier class for the first time.

Real Madrid players train ahead of their Champions League clash against Shakhtar Donetsk . However Zidane refuted those claims. "He's really strong mentally. It ' s another injury for him, and it ' s disappointing for us. These are things that happen in many teams and we need to deal with it," Zidane

“It was another really impressive performance against a strong opponent in the Champions League . 66 mins Man City 3 Shakhtar 0. A rare attack by the visitors but it ' s not really that much to shout home Shakhtar Donetsk 's Andriy Pyatov reacts after referee Viktor Kassai (not pictured)

The use of Lucas Vazquez at right-back was also exposed as folly by another substitute, Manor Solomon, who was allowed to cut inside far too easily before firing past Thibaut Courtois.

That Vazquez was vulnerable was hardly a surprise. His unsuitability to the role was highlighted by Madrid legend Predrag Mijatovic after the Alaves loss, with the Serb openly questioning Zidane's tactics.

“He must fix the situation but this begins when you prepare for the match,” the 1998 Champions League hero told Cadena SER. “You should know that Alaves’ three forward players are their strength.

“So, if you have Lucas Vazquez, who was more advanced against Inter, when he played a good game, you can’t put him as a full-back because you have (Eder) Militao who could play there.

"I don’t know what’s happened to that kid because he doesn’t play either as a centre-back or a full-back. So, then you have Lucas Vazquez as your full-back, with Marco Asensio in front of him, when you know that Asensio can’t help him as much as any other player.”

Whether Zidane likes it or not, there will be another public inquest after the Shakhtar setback, which now means that Real will likely have to better the Ukrainians result on matchday six to reach the knockout stage.

He admitted at the weekend that he had "no explanation" for Madrid's rotten run of form. He needs to find an answer fast, though, because the difficult questions are only going to increase. The journalists will continue doing their job; it's time for Zidane to do his.

No. 1 Gonzaga suspends team activities due to COVID-19 .
First came the cancellation of Saturday’s anticipated game between No. 1 Gonzaga and No. 2 Baylor. Then came the news a day later that Gonzaga is suspending team activities. © Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports The Bulldogs announced on Sunday that they are suspending activities due to COVID-19 within the program. “Out of an abundance of caution and the well-being of student-athletes, in accordance with COVID-19 protocols Gonzaga has made the decision to pause men’s basketball competitions through December 14,” the school said.

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