Real Madrid’s Santiago Solari: Isco did not confront angry fans in Champions League defeat

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Real Madrid coach Santiago Solari said Isco did not have a confrontation with his own fans and was instead appealing for a corner in Wednesday’s 3-0 Champions League defeat at home to CSKA Moscow.

The midfielder was whistled by fans after appearing to react with a gesture and angry words towards supporters at the Santiago Bernabeu, before apparently declining the captain’s armband late on, though this was disputed by Dani Carvajal.

Solari was asked about the incident, and said that he and his players are ignoring the hyperbole surrounding the club.

“I had the feeling that he was claiming for a corner, or a foul,” Solari told a news conference. “I understand the media’s work, but ours must be something else. Isco is a mature man, a professional, and has given so many things, so much joy to this club.

“Every little thing here at Madrid is given great importance by the media, where there is a lot of hyperbole. I understand you have your job to do. But we focus on our own jobs, which is completely different.”

Both Isco and Marcelo were among several players whistled by supporters as Madrid fell to their worst defeat in history at home in European competition, but Solari called for more unity from everyone around the club.

“The fans express themselves, and we must respect that,” he said. “We always want to have their support, we need that. Over 115 years of history all the things we have achieved have come from being united.

“How can we not believe in Real Madrid, after so many years and trophies and legends? Real Madrid have won four of the last five Champions Leagues.

“We are still alive in all the competitions we are playing in. In football there can be ups and downs during a season, but through Madrid’s history there have been a lot more ups.”

Gareth Bale picked up an ankle knock against CSKA and received lengthy treatment on the sidelines, although he remained on the pitch until the final whistle, and is unlikely to feature on Saturday against Rayo Vallecano.

“We will see how his ankle is and how it goes for tomorrow, talking to our doctors and with him,” Solari said.

Casemiro, Nacho Fernandez and Sergio Reguilon are all close to a return to first team action following injuries, with Madrid flying out Sunday to Abu Dhabi ahead of next Wednesday’s Club World Cup semifinal against Mexican club Chivas or Japan’s Kashima Antlers.

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