Isco criticised by Jorge Valdano for reaction to being substituted v Las Palmas.

Isco criticised by Jorge Valdano for reaction to being substituted v Las Palmas

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Shortly after picking up a yellow card against Las Palmas on Sunday, Real Madrid playmaker Isco was substituted for Mateo Kovacic by Zinedine Zidane.

The Spaniard looked disappointed to be withdrawn on the hour mark but still tapped the outstretched hand of Zidane before sitting down on the bench.

It was in the dugout where he threw a bit of strop, chucking away his coat and shin pads in frustration. (Scroll down this page to watch the video).


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Speaking about Isco’s reaction, former Real Madrid player and coach Jorge Valdano criticised the 23-year-old.

"That is not a good contribution to the atmosphere that teams need," Valdano was quoted as saying by ESPN. ”It is not the behaviour of a mature player. He will feel a debt to his team."

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Video: Isco's reaction

It wasn't that bad...

In truth, Isco’s reaction was relatively tame. Yes, he reacted badly in the dugout, but he may have been frustrated with his own performance as much as Zidane’s decision to withdraw him.

After picking up the booking, it would have been a risk for Zidane to keep him on the pitch for the remaining 35 minutes.

UD Las Palmas v Real Madrid CF - La Liga

Las Palmas equalised in the 87th minute but Real Madrid secured all three points thanks to Casemiro’s winner two minutes later.

Isco or James?

There’s a chance Isco will leave the Bernabeu this summer.

It’s impossible for Zidane to fit Isco and James Rodriguez into the same team - and then there’s Kovacic to consider, too - so one of the expensive attacking midfielders will surely need to make way at the end of the season.

There was speculation at the start of Zidane’s reign that he had lost patience with James; however, the French coach dismissed the rumours as nonsense.

"I'm angered by what people are saying about James, but we have to put those rumours to one side,” Zidane was quoted as saying by ESPN.


"I like what I see of James here. He's fully focused on what he's doing and I don't believe what is being said about him outside of the club. He looks committed and focused on what he does every day."

However, Real Madrid fans see some of Zidane in Isco - and so does the club’s head coach.

"Isco is a bit like me on a technical level," Zidane was quoted as saying by Goal in 2015. "The fans are loving him and he is going through a special moment.

Levante UD v Real Madrid CF - La Liga

"He is a first-team regular at the moment and he has proven to be a great buy."

Real Madrid fans: should Isco or James leave the Bernabeu this summer? Have your say by leaving a comment below.

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Cristiano Ronaldo
UEFA Champions League
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