Overall, 2017 has been a magnificent year for Real Madrid, winning La Liga, the Champions League and being crowned as FIFA Club World Cup winners earlier this month.
However, it won't feel like that now, because they will begin 2018 a massive 14 points behind Barcelona after the league leaders triumphed in Saturday's El Clasico.
The 3-0 result maintains Barca's unbeaten 2017-18 La Liga record and leaves Real down in fourth place behind Atletico Madrid and Valencia, having played a match less.
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The defending Spanish champions have only won nine of their 16 league games so far this term, and the pressure has increased significantly on manager Zinedine Zidane.
However, ex-Barca forward Thierry Henry has defended the Madrid manager and reacted to claims that his fellow Frenchman could be close to getting sacked.
Henry on under-fire Zidane
Henry was part of Sky Sports' team for El Clasico, and after the game, he insisted it's laughable that Zidane's position is under threat, given how much he's already achieved as Real boss.
“The coach can give you a tactic and a plan, but your team need to execute it with what’s happening on the field.
“To even talk about Zizou getting the sack is comical to me with what he has done. Can he not have a little pause on the run that he had with his team?
"It goes with the job, because when you don’t perform they ask questions, but come on, he has done a tremendous job.”
Henry praises Zizou for key decision
Zidane has won eight trophies, including back-to-back Champions Leagues, since taking over in January 2016, and Henry praised him for instantly establishing Casemiro in his starting XI.
The 40-year-old, who won both the Euros and World Cup with Zidane, added: "I like to bring it back to when he arrived. He did something that Rafa Benitez had tried to do, to play Casemiro.
"And the fans allowed him to do it. At the beginning, they were not playing the way Real Madrid fans wanted to see them play, but they were winning games."
Henry continued: "So, people were saying Zizou is a great tactician because he recognised that the midfield needed an enforcer more than four Galacticos.
“He went on to win back-to-back Champions Leagues and everything else, and up until 45 minutes of this game (against Barcelona), it was not bad what he was doing."
After the Clasico loss, Zidane still has the backing of his players and most of the fans, but as we all know, even that is sometimes not enough if Madrid go a season without trophies.
Do YOU agree with Henry's opinion on Zidane? Do YOU think he deserves to be sacked as Real manager? Leave YOUR opinions in the comments box below!
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