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Benítez says it's "a privilege" to coach James

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The Spanish manager did not have a bad thing to say about his players after the scare in Ukraine.

Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

James Rodríguez has been one of the players whose importance has decreased ever since Rafa Benítez took over Real Madrid. There's no doubt that the Colombian player is a star player, but it seems that Benítez is yet to find him the proper spot in his tactics given that Bale has been the one playing behind the striker when the whole roster is available.

"It's a privilege to work with players like James," said Benítez in today's press conference. "I hope that he keeps playing this way, scoring goals for us and helping us win titles along the way," he added. Against Shakhtar, James did not play a single minute.

Benítez also admitted that both Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale "have freedom to operate wherever they want as that is what causes the opposition's defense some serious problems."

Real Madrid will visit Eibar tomorrow trying to bounce back after the discouraging 0-4 loss to FC Barcelona.