Real Madrid boss Santiago Solari said his decision to leave Isco out of the squad to play Roma on Tuesday was for sporting reasons.
"There are specific decisions for specific moments," Solari said following the 2-0 win.
"We are making decisions and that's it, they are almost always sporting except in rare cases, but that doesn't apply here.”
But not everybody is buying it.
The truth of the matter is that Isco and Solari seem to have some issues. He has played just 78 minutes since the 42-year-old was made Real’s interim, and since permanent, manager.
To not even find room for Isco on the bench is telling.
The Spain international travelled to Italy for Real’s Champions League fixture but he didn’t kit up.
Isco was baffled upon his arrival
And footage of Isco’s arrival at the Stadio Olimpico shows just how perplexed he was.
Isco is seen with Javi Garcia Coll, a key figure between the club and the locker room.
According to Marca, Isco was so embarrassed at being dropped that he had to ask Coll whether he needed to enter the away dressing room.
It was clearly an unexpected situation for Isco to be in.
Isco’s fall has confused Spanish-based journalist Andy West, who took to Twitter to send a message to Solari.
“Look Señor Solari, there's something very simple you need to learn: No Isco, No Disco,” West wrote after the starting line-ups were announced.
“Seriously, the only time Real Madrid have played consistently good football for a sustained period in the last five years was at the end of the 2016/17 season, when Isco was at the point of a midfield diamond.”
It’s surely in Real’s best interests to resolve the situation.
Isco, at his best, is a superb talent and can play a part in helping Los Blancos close the gap at the top of La Liga.
They are currently sixth, six points behind leaders Sevilla.
Their form in Europe has been much better. Real have already secured a place in the knockout stage, winning four out of five group games, as they look to win the Champions League for a fourth-straight season.