The time has finally come for Zinedine Zidane to come out in public and demand that the Real Madrid players provide an immediate response to the recent run of poor results, Depor and Valencia aside.
He has shown his face repeatedly, backing his squad in all forums and in all circumstances, in victories and especially in defeat.
On a few occasions there has been a small public gesture which could be considered to be that the coach was questioning his own, but in almost all situations, the Frenchman has shielded his players to the maximum.
The response of the Los Blancos squad, however, is not the same as that offered by Zidane, who has given everything but is not finding the desired response within the group – at least on the pitch.
If the coach has defended his team sometimes without an argument to do so, the same can’t be said of the players, as the team’s progress reflects.
In recent days and within the talks they have had in the group, the coach himself demanded everyone follow captain Sergio Ramos’ lead, that everyone is on the same level.
It wasn’t a reproach, but a touch of attention so that the team react, something that didn’t happen last Saturday.
The draw was painful, coming in the final minutes after a chain of errors and sloppiness.
Even the president himself, who always likes to go down and talk to the players, barely showed up in the dressing room.
Nobody can find an explanation for this lack of response – from the same players that took Real Madrid to the highest level just a few months ago.