Zidane: Real Madrid must stay 'positive' despite shock Villarreal defeat

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Real now sit 16 points behind league leaders Barcelona in the table and Kroos conceced that the gap between the two bitter rivals will be hard to surmount.

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino has responded to reports that he is being lined-up to replace Zinedine Zidane at Real Madrid. By contrast Zidane's side again looked a shambles tactically, in bad need of a shake-up given their lack of confidence and ideas.

Real Madrid offloaded Rodriguez to Bayern Munich back in the summer after the Colombia worldwide failed to earn the trust of Zinedine Zidane. Real Madrid left itself irresponsibly exposed while attacking at the other end, and only Dani Carvajal even feigned interest in defending the counter.

Calderon accused Perez of deliberately leaking plans of a swap involving Cristiano Ronaldo for PSG attacker Neymar.

It's true that the hosts had 29 shots on goal for the third time in a game this season, but two of those three matches have been lost.

Pablo Fornals netted Villarreal's victor in the 87th minute, prompting loud boos by the home crowd which three days ago saw their team draw with second-division club Numancia 2-2 in the Copa del Rey.

According to AS despite Ronaldo bagging three of the last four Ballon d'Or titles, Real have done nothing to make him feel important in Spain. "The ball didn't want to go in", he said after Villarreal's first ever win over Real, as quoted on the club's official website. The more optimistic Madrid fans and pundits can only hope that behind closed doors he has a better idea of how to fix things.

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James in particular, who Zidane left out of both Champions League final teams, has impressed during his loan spell at Bayern Munich.

Villarreal have scored the eighth most goals and allowed the eighth fewest goals in La Liga.

"First of all, we have to think about our position at the moment", the midfielder told BeIN Sports.

Predecessor Rafa Benitez was sacked nearly exactly two years ago after taking 37 points from 18 La Liga games.

But Barca will have competition from Real Madrid for his services, with Florentino Perez having already shown an interest in his signature. When we are on a bad run there are always negatives to pick up on.

Combined with the Clasico loss to Barcelona last month, Real Madrid have now lost two consecutive league games at home for the first time since May 2 and 24, 2009.

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