Santiago Solari praises out of favour Isco after Copa del Rey double

Tanya Simon
December 7, 2018

Real Madrid coach Santi Solari was guarded in his praise for Isco after the Spain global marked a rare start with two goals in his team's 6-1 stroll past third tier Melilla in the Copa del Rey at the Bernabeu on Thursday afternoon.

The score stands at 0-4 from the first leg when the two teams met in October.

The Spain playmaker has been confined to bench duty since Solari replaced Julen Lopetegui in the hotseat and was dropped from Madrid's matchday squad for last week's 2-0 Champions League victory at Roma.

Solari gave little away in terms of team selection, but Castilla players Javi Sanchez, Fidalgo and Cristo have been included in his squad.

"This Thursday there is a match and many players will come, we want to see several [younger] players on the field".

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"I'm very happy for Isco, I was very sorry that he missed the one played in the first half, because it would have been a great goal", he told reporters.

The 26-year-old has played a bit-part role of late following a bust-up with manager Santiago Solari.

The game, as well as the tie, was effectively over six minutes before the break when Asensio turned provider to allow Sanchez to help himself to a third, and Melilla's hopes of keeping matters respectable were deal a further blow within two minutes of the restart when skipper Isco blasted home from distance. "The focus has to be on him".

Karim Benzema, Marco Asensio, Alvaro Odriozola and Cristo were all on target for Real in the first leg, while Melilla have since won all five of their league games and hold a five-point lead at the top of their Segunda B group. He's had a wonderful year and he's given everything to Real Madrid and his national team.

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