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Zidane: “We actually planned to take Vinícius off before he assisted the opener”

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The coach’s thoughts after the game.

Real Madrid v Getafe CF - La Liga Santander Photo by Diego Souto/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

Vinícius assisted Karim Benzema for the opening goal of Real Madrid’s 2-0 win over Getafe on Tuesday, but Zinedine Zidane had actually planned to take the Brazilian off five minutes before that goal.

He admitted this in his post-match press conference when asked about the confusion that surrounded the 55th minute substitution of Marvin Park for Sergio Arribas, saying: “Yes, we planned to take Vinícius off. But then Marvin Park hurt himself and we changed our plans.”

Isco didn’t come on until the final quarter of an hour and some were surprised by this, considering all the injuries. But, Zidane explained that there was a simple reason. He said: “Isco had only trained with the team once since his own injury. That was the reason.”

On the system used in the game, Zidane told the media that the main reason for the tactical tweaks was the limited personnel available. The coach said: “Today we did this because we had to adapt to the situation with lots of absences. We interpreted the match very well and I’m happy for the players, because that’s not easy. We were really good, especially defensively.”

Finally, he was asked about the title race as a whole, saying: “Our fans always think that we can change things in the title race. It’ll be difficult, but we’ll carry on. We’re just thinking about what we can do. There are 51 points left in play [sic: it’s actually 48] and we’re just thinking about our games and we need to continue with our work. We can’t think about the others title challengers. These two wins in a row are very good. Now, we need to keep this up.”