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Notes & Quotes: October 31, 2018

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Solari’s reaction to Real’s Copa win and Zidane comparisons; Nacho backs Solari

Real Madrid CF v SL Benfica - UEFA Youth League Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

Solari happy with team performance against Melilla

Real Madrid interim manager Santiago Solari was interviewed on Wednesday after the Melilla match. During this press conference, Solari praised the team’s performance and win.

“The team played with joy, enthusiasm and commitment and the result is the fruit of that.”

“They are great champions, they are very committed. If not, you do not earn everything you have earned.”

“They are hurt because this is sport, there are dynamics that are bad and it has to be reversed. We have done many things well.”

“I’m happy with the team’s character, they ran, they looked for the goal, they were fresh and happy.”

Real Madrid were able to dominate Melilla, even with many of the young players starting for Real. For Solari, it was no doubt an encouraging win to start off his new management of the club.

Solari will likely start most of the main players against Valladolid on Saturday, it will be more of a test for him and the squad than this match was. It’ll be one he will most certainly want to win to get Real back in the LaLiga race.

Solari doesn’t want to be compared to Zidane

Solari was also asked prior to the Melilla match about how he compares with former manager Zinedine Zidane.

“Let’s just let him live in peace, he’s one of Real Madrid’s greatest icons.”

“There’s not enough words to describe Zizou, let’s leave him live with his greatness and not compare.”

“Nobody can compare with him.”

Zidane and Solari obviously have some comparisons with each other. Both were teammates during their tenure at Real Madrid. They were also both managers of Castilla, and both had similar, questionable records there.

Obviously, it is way too early to compare the two as managers of Real, especially since Solari isn’t even full-time yet. It makes absolute sense why Solari didn’t even want to entertain these comparisons so soon.

Nacho gives thoughts on Solari

Nacho Fernández was interviewed by beIN SPORTS after the Copa Del Rey match against Melilla and asked about his thoughts on Solari.

“We will work as if he is here for the full season. He is from here; he is experienced; he has won titles with Madrid.”

“We, the players, don’t have to make these decisions and we will see what happens but he’s a great coach.”

“The squad was with Lopetegui, but we didn’t have any luck. Now we have a new coach, who is excited, and we will fight to the death for him, too.”

Many of the players came out close to the end of Lopetegui’s tenure to publicly back him as manager. Nacho appears to be the first to do so with Solari, though he is only an interim manager for now.

The mentality the squad must go with is backing him as if he were a full-time manager like Conte, which Nacho suggests they will do. They most certainly want to be more successful under Solari, even if he isn’t at the club for the long-haul.