Real Madrid ‘exceptional’ against Paris Saint-Germain: Benitez.
Real Madrid mentor Rafa Benitez was loaded with recognition for an “extraordinary” execution from his damage hit side as they stayed top of Champions League Group A after a goalless draw against Paris Saint-Germain.
A fixed up Madrid XI had pretty much the better risks of a sketchy experience at the Parc des Princes, with Cristiano Ronaldo lashing a shot wide in the second half, while PSG striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic and ex-Blancos winger Angel Di Maria were all around took care of by the meeting barrier.
The outcome leaves both groups well set to achieve the last 16 of the opposition, with the gathering champs prone to be chosen when they meet again in Madrid in two weeks’ opportunity.
Benitez told correspondents after the amusement that he felt his players had done what’s necessary to take the three points and he was exceptionally content with how things had gone.
“We did enough to win the game,” Benitez said. “I would take nothing away from those who played. We were not just good, but exceptional.
“I was convinced the team was going to do well. We had more chances and pretty good control of the game. We shot much more than PSG, and pressed more. With the absences we have, I am very satisfied.”
Real Madrid were feeling the loss of a considerable rundown of sidelined stars including James Rodriguez, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema, while midfielder Mateo Kovacic got a muscle issue in preparing and passed up a great opportunity, and Luka Modric was just sufficiently fit for 20 minutes on his arrival from harm.
This implied youths including Casemiro, Lucas Vazquez and Jese Rodriguez were all piece of a side which additionally included commander Sergio Ramos playing with an infusion in a harmed shoulder.
Benitez did not concur with a columnist who inquired as to whether he felt the diversion had demonstrated PSG mentor Laurent Blanc’s pregame remarks that Madrid were a guarded group were mixed up.
“I am not concerned with possession of the ball,” he said. “The team defended when they had to, and attacked when they had to go up front. We achieved what we set out to do, we were an aggressive team, looking to find their goal.
“We saw the danger of Lucas, Jese, Ronaldo, Isco. All the things we planned for came out happening in the game, in a positive way. We were missing a few details, in both attack and defence, but the balance is exceptional.”
Summer signing Kovacic, who had been expected to play in midfield, had been left out due to a precaution, Benitez said.
“[Kovacic] had a strain,” he said. “We decided not to risk him.”
He told beIN SPORTS after the game that the homegrown youngsters who had come in, including 22-year-old Jese and 24-year-old Vazquez, had put in impressive performances.
“We are not going through our best moment with the injuries we are having, but we must look forward,” he said. “These are not excuses, we have a very deep squad with young players who bring excitement and are motivated to add things.
“We saw that with Jese or Lucas Vazquez, who played well and that will help us to improve as a team.”
The Spain international admitted he had played with a pain-killing injection, as he did in the 1-1 draw at Atletico Madrid earlier in the month.
“I ended the game with some pain, when you take the vitamin you forget everything, but then the pain comes back,” he said. “Yes, a little [injection].”
Ramos said Madrid were pleased with the point, which keeps them top of the standings on goal difference.
“It was a difficult game, competitive, against a quality opponent,” Ramos said. “We are going home happy. We knew how to compete, it was tough to create chances to score, but we managed to get a point at a difficult place to come and now must keep improving.
“These type of games are like finals, whoever commits the least errors takes the points. We knew how to do the right thing in actions that in other games we have made mistakes.
“The game was long, you cannot always press up top. We must take good things from this game. Then we had to manage our resources and the time on the clock, we are happy.”