Real Madrid news: Jose Mourinho offers Santiago Solari prediction | Football | Sport


Reports emerged ahead of Madrid’s Clasico showdown with Barcelona last night that Solari is under increasing pressure.

Los Blancos were eliminated from the Copa del Rey semi-finals by Barca in mid-week, suffering a 3-0 second-leg loss at the Bernabeu despite a positive performance.

And a 1-0 defeat to their Catalan rivals in the league last night leaves them 12 points behind the league leaders with 12 games left of the campaign.

That has led to suggestions that Solari could be relieved of managerial duties in the summer.

Solari was in charge of Real Madrid’s B team back in October when he was called upon to replace Julen Lopetegui as caretaker manager after the latter lasted just four-and-a-half months in charge.

After winning all four games in a spell as interim coach, Solari was handed the job permanently until June 2021 the following month.

After a brief resurgence, Real have since dropped again and only the Champions League – which they have won in four of the last five years and in all of the last three – remains if they are to end the season with major silverware.

Yet Mourinho – who has been linked as a possible replacement for Solari after a three-year spell at the Bernabeu earlier in his career – thinks Real can regroup and have another good go at saving their season in Europe.

They face Ajax in the second leg of their last 16 clash in the Spanish capital this Tuesday (8pm), leading 2-1 on aggregate.

Mourinho told beIN Sports: “I think he’s obviously pragmatic and correct to say that they are out of the cup because they were knocked out. 

“In relation to La Liga I think the manager and the players cannot say, and shouldn’t say, but we can say – La Liga is finished. Now they have only the Champions League to play. 

“I think the positive thing is the good result they did in Amsterdam which allows them to play the next match at home, not with full security but normally Real Madrid in the Bernabeu is not going to lose a third match in the same week or lose by two goals difference. 

“Normally they are going to qualify to the quarter-finals and that is in about three or four weeks’ time and that will give them time to recover some of their good qualities.”

Barca became the first time in history to win three consecutive games at the Bernabeu and Mourinho felt that Real simply didn’t have enough intensity and drive in their performance.

He said in his post-match analysis: “It was not a happy performance, it was not a performance of a happy team. Not a performance of a team with great belief and self-esteem. 

“Clearly, they are now in a zone after a few bad results – especially the cup match – where they are in a low. 

“They couldn’t bring to the game what I used to call the temperature of the big matches, they were passive. 

“I cannot speak about a bad performance, it’s not a bad performance, it was just a soft performance. 

“Sometimes you play like this against medium teams and in the end you get a positive result. 

“But against the top teams you have to do much more than this if you want to win. I don’t think it’s a bad performance, I just think it’s a soft performance.”

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