Football

Real need only a draw but Zidane wants a victory

Real Madrid can almost touch the La Liga title after a five-year wait, needing only to avoid defeat by Malaga on Monday morning (Singapore time) to grab the trophy from the hands of arch-rivals Barcelona.

Real lead the standings on 90 points, three above Barcelona.

"We still have the most difficult job ahead of us," Real coach Zinedine Zidane said on Thursday.

"Now we know what we have to do and we have to recover well, because the players have given a lot in the last two games."

"There is still a game to play and we need to win a point. The league is not over yet."

"We still have to play the last game and it is going to be at least as difficult as it was in Vigo (Real beat Celta 4-1 away)," added the Frenchman, who ruled out playing for the draw that will assure the title.

"We are going to continue playing as we have been doing, we know it will be difficult, but we are going to go to win the match."

Standing in the way of a first title since 2012 is a Malaga side with little at stake and who are coached by Michel Gonzalez, who spent 14 trophy-laden seasons at the Bernabeu.

Real famously squandered two consecutive titles in 1992 and 1993 away to Tenerife, then coached by another Real great, Jorge Valdano, handing the trophy to Barcelona on the final day.

Michel stirred controversy in a radio interview last month when he declared, "I'm a much bigger Madrid fan than Valdano".

However, Michel, who oversaw a surprise 2-0 win over Barca last month, has promised to treat the game like any other.

"It's my Madrid but also my Malaga. I have to respect the competition and always go out to win," he said. - WIRE SERVICES


FIXTURES

  • Today: Sporting Gijon v Real Betis, Deportivo La Coruna v Las Palmas, Leganes v Alaves, Sevilla v Osasuna
  • Tomorrow: Atletico Madrid v Athletic Bilbao, Celta Vigo v Real Sociedad, Valencia v Villarreal, Barcelona v Eibar, Malaga v Real Madrid.

 

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