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Marcelino: “The players tell me it’s a different game and I need to manage a match with Real Madrid in San Mamés”

The Athletic Club manager speaks ahead of Wednesday’s match

Real Madrid v Athletic de Bilbao - La Liga Santander Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images

Athletic Club manager Marcelino spoke ahead of the match against Real Madrid at San Mamés on Wednesday, via MARCA.

“They [the team] tell me it’s a different game. The players say that I need to manage a match with Real Madrid in San Mamés. It will be complicated, but if we have a good day and more efficiency than at the Bernabéu we will have our options.”

“The script you think is very good is winning. Surely, we will suffer until the last minute and hopefully we have options to win until that last minute.”

Marcelino has not faced Real Madrid at home since taking the managerial helm of the club at the start of 2021. His side lost their away trip to the Bernabeu 1-0 at the beginning of December.

The 56-year-old veteran manager spoke on the impact of coronavirus cases to his own team and the club they will be facing on the opposite side of the pitch.

“Real Madrid is a great team, it has casualties but a template to amend it. Yes, there will be [Karim] Benzema, who is the player with more level than we have of competition”.

“I don’t know what’s going to happen. The midfield formed by Casemiro, Modric and Kroos there are not many in the world. Sure, [Eduardo] Camavinga and [Fede] Valverde offer different profiles, but they are very good. If I chose two players that I did not want them to play, I would choose Benzema and Vinicius, although the big games you also want to play against great footballers. Real Madrid have been away for more time than at the Bernabeu. We have to prepare for everything. Press up when we can and attack when we can.”

Marcelino finished the press conference talking about his strategy for the home match and how it might be different this time around than it was a couple of weeks ago.

“You don’t have to play impatiently and know how to play. At the Bernabéu we were fifteen minutes subdued but the rival generated very little. To beat Real Madrid, it is very important to keep a clean sheet, which is something we must correct.”

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