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Zidane: “I’m proud of my players, a win like this isn’t easy”

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The French coach was happy with what he saw from his players after the 2-0 win in El Clasico.

Real Madrid CF v FC Barcelona - La Liga Photo by Alejandro Rios/DeFodi Images via Getty Images

Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane was visibly satisfied with the 2-0 win in El Clasico. Madrid needed to bounce back from their past three games against Celta, Levante and Manchester City and did so in convincing fashion, regaining the lead in La Liga table.

“We’re happy because we all proved that we did a good job, I’m proud of my players because a win like this one isn’t easy. Today our balance was very important. The first thing is to defend as a team and then we know we can score goals. The second half was ours, we had many chances to score and did so in two occasions. We kept a clean sheet and Courtois was crucial, we won this game as a team,” said Zidane after the match.

The French coach wanted to praise Thibaut Courtois’ recent form. The goalkeeper has been one of the main reasons why Real Madrid are still in the race for La Liga title and Zidane acknowledged his good form.

“He’s been good but not only tonight, he’s been good for quite a while now and we’re calm when he’s defending our goal. He completed three brilliant saves which kept us in the game, those saves were crucial,” added Zidane.

Madrid’s win in El Clasico could give them the momentum they need to win the title, especially after the last three results.

“This win gives us a huge boost in confidence. We were talking about bouncing back and in the end we did what we were working on during the whole week. We believed we could pull this off and complete a good game and that’s what we did. We deserved the win but still it was a tough game because we were facing a quality opponent. We will have more moments like this one and we will be criticized, but that’s not new to us,” explained the coach.

Zidane was also asked about Madrid’s chances to go through against City. Los Blancos lost 1-2 at home and that will make it very tough for them. The coach believes they can do it, though.

“We’re ready for the return leg even though we have games to play before that one. Today’s reaction was a good one, our dressing room is not hurt. It was a tough week but we got ready for that game, meaning that the players are committed. We played 78 good minutes and we lost. Today we won playing 90 good minutes, so we must keep doing this, but we know it’s going to be tough until the very end. We have to prove it every game we play,” concluded Zidane.