Clubs, Real Madrid, Spanish Primera División, Story, UEFA Champions League


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Sergio Ramos had a training ground bust-up with a Real Madrid teammate on Monday as under-pressure coach Julen Lopetegui admitted he is in the dark over his long term future at the club.

Captain Ramos reacted angrily after he was struck by youth player Sergio Reguilon in training ahead of Madrid’s clash with Viktoria Plzen on Tuesday.

“Although it may not seem like it, they are quite common situations, but it is not an excuse, my reaction should not have been that,” Ramos wrote on Twitter.

“We always go full, right, Regui? In the end team victory together.”

Reguilon replied to Ramos’ comment via his own tweet shortly thereafter: “I always support my team and my captain. Let’s go after the victory tomorrow!”

Meanwhile, Madrid coach Lopetegui said he cannot confirm anything about his future other than that he “will be the coach tomorrow.”

Lopetegui goes into Tuesday’s Champions League clash with Viktoria Plzen at the Bernabeu under huge pressure following three straight defeats including Saturday’s 2-1 La Liga loss at home to Levante, with local media claiming club president Florentino Perez is considering a list of replacements including Antonio Conte, Michael Laudrup and Madrid Castilla coach Santi Solari.

Asked at the prematch news conference if he had been told by Perez his job was safe, the former Spain boss said he was keeping away from all the noise over his future.

“You think that I am reading and listening to what is being said?” Lopetegui said. “I see things in a much more normal way, I am going day-to-day the same as always. That is the only thing we can control.

“I am just preparing my team for the game. I do not look any further than that, which is my responsibility as a coach. We are excited and motivated for tomorrow’s game in an important competition like the Champions League.

“I cannot confirm anything apart from that I will be the coach tomorrow. If you ask me what will happen in a month, in a year, I cannot say. I am just focused on the present, and tomorrow’s game.”

Lopetegui said he had learned from his time at the Bernabeu that the club battled their way through difficult moments.

“What I have learned at this club is to battle — that is the DNA of this club,” Lopetegui said. “We will battle, as a team, as a coaching team. We know the situation is not the best, but also that we have time to turn things around.”

Asked how the dressing room was dealing with the difficult situation, Lopetegui called on players who have won four of the last five Champions League trophies to stand up and perform.

“This is a strong dressing room, and it is not by chance that they are champions,” he said. “In difficult moments champions come through, and not by listening to what is being said.

“The team is alive, we are looking forward to playing a great game tomorrow. We need to be more effective in attack, not making such mistakes at the back. That happens through improving on the things we have been doing.”

Madrid eased to a 3-0 win over Roma in their first Group G game of the season, but were then shocked 1-0 at CSKA Moscow last time out.

Plzen are bottom of Group G, having drawn 2-2 at home to CSKA, then lost 5-0 at Roma.





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