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Report: Courtois half time substitution explained

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Thibaut Courtois was substituted at half time in Real Madrids 2-2 draw against FC Brugge, Zinedine Zidane explains.

Real Madrid conceded two goals in the first half of the UEFA Champions League Group A match with FC Brugge at the Santiago Bernabeau.

So when the second half started with a change of goalkeeper, tounges were wagging about Courtois’s future in Madrid.

There has been the talk of a strained relationship between the manager and his number one.

With Zidane apparently not enthralled by the Belgians fitness, attitude and quite simply his ability.

It saw a preseason battle between Courtois and now PSG number 1 Keylor Navas. Navas stepped in during Courtois’s injury and was commended for his contribution.

It is believed though that Florentino Perez and the power brokers at Real were insistent that Courtois was given the number one spot.

Navas has since departed for Paris and is enjoying himself as a first-choice keeper at the top of his game once more.

When Navas left for the French Champions, Real sought to acquire a new back up keeper to their Belgian international.

They actually signed PSG’s then number one Alphonse Areola.

Zidane has expressed his dismay at the result and his team’s performance. However, he had resisted the opportunity to call out individuals.

But when the change of goalkeeping personnel took place at the interval, it appeared to be a bold statement from the manager.

Apparently not so, there is a quite simple reason according to Zidane, and nothing more than that.

In his post-match press conference, he told reporters the situation.

He said:

“Courtois wasn’t well and couldn’t continue.”

He still has confidence in Courtois.

he added

“I’m not at all worried about Thibaut’s form or anything else.”

He was not willing to lay the blame on specific players, in fact, he felt it was a collective problem.

He concluded:

“The only thing I’m interested in is doing things well, like we did in the second-half. We could blame Thibaut, but we are all involved, me more than anyone.”