Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane says relationship between Karim Benzema and Vinicius Junior is ‘perfect’ after half-time controversy in Borussia Monchengladbach draw
Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane insists the relationship between Karim Benzema and Vinicius Junior is ‘perfect’.
The striker told his teammate Ferland Mendy to avoid passing to the Brazilian as he was ‘playing against them’ in a brutal conversation that was caught on camera at half-time in Tuesday’s 2-2 draw with Borussia Monchengladbach
Benzema said in a leaked clip: “Don’t play with him. On my mother’s life, he is playing against us.”
The defender was heard replying: “When he becomes scared, he loses what makes him great.”
Real Madrid were 2-0 down thanks to a brace from Marcus Thuram, before Benzema and Casemiro netted late goals to earn a point in the Champions League clash.
Despite the harsh words, Zidane played down suggestions of friction between Benzema and Vinicius.
On Friday, he said: “It is clear about Benzema and Vinicius. They have talked to each other. Things stay on the field. They talked and it is perfect.
“There is no problem between them – the opposite. In the end, the important thing is that the energy is on tomorrow’s game [against Huesca].
“Things like Benzema and Vinicius have always happened but they stay on the field. The only thing that has changed is that there are many cameras.”
Mendy only passed the ball to Vinicius three times during the second-half following the conversation.
The 20-year-old winger was replaced by Eden Hazard in the 70th minute having only managed a pass completion rate of 71 per cent.
Zidane is adamant Vinicius has a future at the Bernabeu.
He added: “Vinicius is young. He has a present and a future at Madrid.
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“He is a boy who wants to learn and improve. He works and that is good for a coach and a team.”
Zidane’s comments came following a report from Marca claiming Benzema had apologised to Vinicius.