There was a certain irony to Florentino Perez's impromptu press conference on Thursday lunchtime.
Real Madrid gave the media just an hour to stop what they were doing, get their things together and scramble to the presidential suit at the Santiago Bernabeu to hear Perez get an almighty load off his chest following a tough few weeks for the European champions.
The main aim of Perez's press call was to lambaste exactly those in attendance, namely Madrid-based sports newspapers AS and Marca, for what he deemed to be the "lies" they printed. This was not the first time Perez had stuck the boot in to the media and it will not be the last but the 68-year-old said enough was enough.
The Madrid president had a list of complaints about the media's coverage of the club, his leadership, Carlo Ancelotti and the players. The tipping point came on Thursday morning when Marca's front page reported that Ancelotti would be sacked if he lost the Clasico clash against Barcelona in just over a week. More lies, according to Perez.
He came out to strongly deny the claims and strongly back his manager. The Italian would not be sacked no matter what happened at the Camp Nou on March 22. Win, lose or draw Ancelotti would be in the hot seat until the end of the season at least. Perez would not secure the former Paris, Chelsea and Milan coach's future beyond then and said any new contract would not be addressed until the end of the season. In fairness, that has been the club's line all along, even within the Spanish record 22-match winning run.
The irony was that a large chunk of the press conference was intended to use that same media to get a disgruntled fan base back on side. With the huge clash with Barcelona forthcoming, Perez wanted to unite the club, from the board, the manager and the players to the fans, in light of the whistles heard on more than one occasion at the Bernabeu. He said the players needed the fans now more than ever.
A colourful telling off for the media one minute, followed by an attempt to use them to unite a club that is split. Perez, and Madrid, sometimes need the media as much as the media need them and this was one of those occasions. Did Perez realize the irony of the whole press conference? Probably not.
Even by Madrid's standards, it has not been an easy few weeks. Standards have slipped since the turn of the year and in the last fortnight Madrid have let a four-point lead slip at the top of La Liga to a one-point deficit behind Barcelona. They have not won in three matches, losing two on the spin, and only progressed to the quarter-finals by the skin of their teeth despite losing against Schalke in midweek.
There have been whistles directed at the team, mainly at Iker Casillas, the longest-serving player at the club and an "icon", in Perez's words, as well as Gareth Bale, the man Perez has spent more money on than any other player. There have been questions as to whether the fact the Welshman cost a pretty penny is the sole reason that he is "untouchable" in a three-pronged attack that has been misfiring of late.
If Perez wanted to come out and defend his manager during his toughest spell since taking charge in the Spanish capital then the timing, from his point of view, is understandable. Madrid's match against Barcelona a week on Sunday is a potential title decider and Perez wanted to make an impact and try and change the current downward spiral. Whether it works or not remains to be seen.
Levante visit the Bernabeu this Sunday and if Perez's rare public comments act to fire his confidence-sapped side, then it is job done. The Valencian side may look at this weekend as an opportunity to pounce on an out-of-sorts Madrid side but they may also be lambs to the slaughter. Madrid are a wounded animal and they will look to lash out on Levante ahead of the Clasico clash.
What may be more interesting come Sunday night is the reaction of the fans. Casillas and Bale are both expected to be in Ancelotti's starting line-up and without Perez's call for unity, both would have been expected to be on the end of whistles again from the home support. When their names were read out as the starting line-up, when they touched the ball and when they made a mistake. Unfortunately, that is not uncommon inside the Bernabeu but Perez will hope his words at least calm that frustration.
Sergio Ramos revealed Casillas had been affected by the jeers earlier in the season and Bale's form has taken a notable dip since he was criticised in the press, and from the fans, for perceived "selfishness" earlier this year. A run of one assist and no goals in his last eight games is worrying. Despite having the confidence of his coach, he has lost some confidence in himself.
Perez will be relying on the press to deliver his words to those who will be in attendance on Sunday night but that is like biting the hand that feeds him. Perez brutally attacked a section of the media and those who cover Madrid on a daily basis but he also hoped they would help him swap the thoughts of the Madridistas ahead of what is a crucial period in the club's campaign.
The proof will be in the pudding over the course of the next fortnight and the biggest way to get the fans onside and for Ancelotti to step closer to a new deal than the exit door is for Madrid to do their talking on the pitch at the Camp Nou next week. Whether Perez's words, despite the irony and desperation, will help spark that remains to be seen.