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'We won't score five every game' - Zidane defends Real Madrid after Betis stalemate

23:59 GMT 02/11/2019
Zinedine Zidane, Real Madrid
Los Blancos let a chance to top La Liga slip, but their coach praised their intensity after the game, and tried to temper expectations

Zinedine Zidane praised his Real Madrid players efforts in their draw with Real Betis, and said it was unrealistic to expect them to score a hatful of goals every game.

Madrid were held scoreless at home for the first time in Zidane's second spell in charge by a team that had the most porous defence in La Liga. They had the ball in the net in the first half but Eden Hazard was adjudged offside and the strike was chalked off.

After that Madrid were repelled by Betis, particularly goalkeeper Joel Robles, and, while praising their opponents resilience, Zidane said his team could have done little more.

“They defended very well. We won’t score five goals every day,” he said after the game.

"We have had chances. The goal is the only thing that we have lacked

"Betis are a good team, with very good players. In the first half, we were superior in everything. We missed the goal, and then in the second, it was more balanced.

“They are a rival with quality but it is a shame (to end in a) draw.

Madrid have now failed to score in their last three games against Betis at the Santiago Bernabeu.

They have also been held scoreless in three of their last five games in the Primera Division, while scoring nine in the other two.

Zidane said that nobody was to blame for this stalemate, again complimenting the fire of his charges.

"At the level of play, intensity and attitude, everything has been perfect,” he went on.

“We have failed to put it [in the back of the net]. You cannot reproach anyone. We have tried until the end.”

The draw lifted Betis to 14th in the table, as they kept just their second clean sheet of the season.

Madrid could have gone top, leapfrogging Barcelona, who lost earlier in the day,  3-1 to Levante, but a draw sees the Catalans maintain their slender advantage.

Both Madrid and Barca could be passed by Granada, who take on Real Sociedad on Sunday. A win for the Basques would see them draw level with the two giants on 22 points.

Los Blancos next league game is at Eibar on November 9, while Betis travel to Sevilla the next day.