Ramos plays down Ronaldo disagreement

Isco denies Real Madrid are weaker this season following their goalless stalemate with Athletic Bilbao

This winter has brought another crisis.

Having been held to a goalless draw in their last outing against Athletic Bilbao, Isco has insisted the European champions are not weaker than last term and that injuries have played a big part in their campaign so far.

The champions have found it more hard than usual to break down opposing defences this season, with the lack of goalscoring form of all their top dogs, including Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Bemzema, raising eyebrows.

Ronaldo had previously suggested Madrid are not as strong in 2017-18 following the departures of Alvaro Morata and James Rodriguez, however, attacker Isco did not buy into the argument post-match. "We must remain calm because, even if we did not have a great start to the season, we can still fight for every title".

The squad has also lost depth, with Zidane yet to fully trust summer recruits Theo Hernandez, Dani Ceballos and Jesus Vallejo.

Pressure at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu is high at present, with Los Merengues eight points off leaders Barcelona in La Liga, not to mention trailing to Tottenham Hotspur in their UEFA Champions League group.

"Last season we would score goals in the last minute and at the moment that isn't happening", said Zidane on Saturday.

"But when it does, it won't stop, so we have to keep working".

The fatigue affecting key members of the squad like Marcelo, Luka Modric and Toni Kroos could also be eradicated should Real prioritise Champions League glory once more come the new year, whilst Zidane remains confident Bale can return better than ever.

Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos has rubbished claims he has fallen out with Cristiano Ronaldo over the club's woeful form this season.

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