Zidane: Neymar-less Blaugrana not the weakest Barca

13 August, 2017, 00:34 | Author: Felix Jensen
  • Zidane left with dilemma after Super Cup success

The Spanish worldwide had less than 12 months to run on his existing deal at the Bernabeu and had been sensationally linked with a move to rivals Barcelona as well as Premier League giants Manchester United and Arsenal.

Valverde's men completed a ideal pre-season on the field with a fourth straight win by sweeping aside Chapecoense 5-0 on Monday in a match to raise funds for the stricken Brazilian club who lost 19 players and 24 club officials in a plane crash past year. AS claims that Barcelona, Manchester City and Bayern Munich have "expressed interest" in the midfielder in recent times but Los Blancos have inserted an stunning €700m release clause in the new contract which they believe will end their hopes of signing the player.

Zidane could also bring in playmaker Isco, and return to a 4-3-3 system by giving Cristiano Ronaldo a first start of the season.

After previously struggling to establish himself, Isco emerged as one of Real's key players in the closing stages of last season as the club captured La Liga and Champions League honours.

Who would make it into a combined Real Madrid and Manchester United XI?

However, his situation at Real Madrid underwent a dramatic U-turn in the second part of the season following Gareth Bale's injury.

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Real Madrid superstar Isco has disappointed Barcelona chiefs after signing another five-year deal for the reigning European and Spanish League champions.

There was simply no stopping the former Malaga playmaker from that moment as he helped Real Madrid to four wins in their final four matches of the campaign. Jose Mourinho's side were forced to dance to Isco's tune on the night as the Spaniard, operating in the number 10 position, orchestrated another Real Madrid victory.

Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane said on Saturday that playing for a title against Barcelona is always special when the two giants of Spanish football meet on Sunday at the Nou Camp in the first leg of the Spanish Super Cup.

"He's an important player for us, he works hard and he's crucial".

"Neymar can not be replaced - there is nobody like him".

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