No Bale sale but Zidane ready to bolster Real Madrid ranks in January
Gareth Bale will not be leaving Real Madrid in January, but Zinedine Zidane admits he will look to add in the winter window.
The Blancos have endured setbacks this season in the defence of La Liga and Champions League crowns secured in 2016-17.
Fresh faces could help to carry them back towards those particular prizes in 2018, with Zidane prepared to explore the market for possible transfers.
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The Frenchman has, however, moved to rule out any sales, which means that the likes of Manchester United and Arsenal will be made to wait before making any approach for Bale.
“In the winter market there will be no exits,” Zidane told reporters after seeing his side edge out Malaga.
“But anything can happen in terms of arrivals, we will see.”
Another of those to have been linked with a possible switch elsewhere is Karim Benzema.
The France international has endured a tough time in front of goal this season, but he brought a barren run at Santiago Bernabeu to a close against Malaga to earn praise from his boss.
“Benzema? He’s a player who gives his all. He’s happy and working hard.
“The fans make their decisions and he deserved his ovation today.”
Zidane has maintained throughout the endless rounds of speculation that he has no intention of parting with any senior stars.
Bale has continuously been linked with a return to the Premier League, with the former Tottenham star seeing his time in Spain blighted by injury.
Benzema has also been targeted by English clubs on several occasions, as a striker with a proven track record.
Neither, though, appear to be heading anywhere any time soon, with Real prepared to focus on complementing their talents rather than replacing them.
Any movement on the transfer front must, however, wait for a few weeks yet, with Zidane working on building momentum behind his side – particularly on home soil where they have endured uncharacteristic struggles.
He added on a 3-2 victory in their latest outing, which was secured courtesy of Cristiano Ronaldo converting the rebound of a penalty he saw saved: “We started the game well and scored the first goal quickly, which is important.
“But everything changed and the second half was very difficult.
“We’re happy with the result even though there were other things that were not as we wanted.
“We like to play here [at the Bernabeu].”