Santiago Solari accepted Real Madrid were “weak” in their loss to Leganes, despite progressing to the quarter-finals of the Copa del Rey.Madrid’s 3-0 first-leg win meant Wednesday’s 1-0 defeat at Butarque was not enough to send them out of the tournament at the expense of Leganes for the second year in a row.Solari gave Isco a start in a rejigged team that saw Marcelo feature on the wing in the first half, with Madrid struggling to create chances without a focal point in attack. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? And Solari accepted his side, who have lost two of their last four matches, were not good enough against Leganes, who won the second leg thanks to a first-half Martin Braithwaite goal.”A weak performance, above all the first half,” he told a news conference.”They all needed to get playing time, they got it. We got through the tie, but the performance was weak.”Sometimes we try things and if they do not work, we try to improve them.”We have lacked depth. We paid not having a specific reference in attack.”Madrid were without Karim Benzema, the striker having fractured his finger in their 2-1 win at Real Betis in the league last time out.But Solari is optimistic that the former France international will be able to play Madrid’s next game, against Sevilla on Saturday.”It is a broken little finger,” he said of the striker. “We hope to have him at the weekend, and next Wednesday, and the next weekend.”Isco lasted 68 minutes on a rare start under Solari, with the playmaker withdrawn for Cristo Gonzalez.The Spain midfielder completed 93 per cent of his passes but wasted Madrid’s best chance to score with a tame shot.Solari has regularly been questioned about his apparent lack of faith in Isco but he once again dismissed talk of a rift with the playmaker.”There is no problem, not at all,” Solari said of Isco.
October 20, 2019
Islamabad: Leaders of Pakistan’s Opposition party leaders on Monday denounced Imran Khan for his controversial comments against them in the US, saying the “selected” Prime Minister was an “embarrassment” for the country. Khan, on his first official visit to the US after coming to power in August last year attacked Opposition party leaders, including jailed former prime minister Nawaz Sharif and ex-president Asif Ali Zardari while addressing the Pakistani diaspora in Washington on Sunday. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from USWhile referring to political leaders in the country, Khan said: “They have one purpose, they want to hear three words from me: NRO (National Reconciliation Ordinance).” The NRO is a controversial amnesty ordinance issued by the former President of Pakistan, General Pervez Musharraf, on October 5, 2007. It benefitted leaders Zardari. The NRO was declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court of Pakistan on December 16, 2009. Prime Minister Khan said that under his government, powerful individuals in Pakistan were being held accountable, which included the seizure of their benami properties. Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential pollsReacting to Khan’s statements, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari said: “Imran is a ruler not a leader.” He said that the country needs a leader who speaks for Pakistan and not “just himself.” “Pitty even when representing our country abroad the selected prime minister can’t get off his container,” he said. PPP Senator Sherry Rehman called Khan’s rally in DC is an “embarrassment” for the nation. She further claimed that diplomats in Islamabad were “shocked and embarrassed” after Khan’s polarising speech to the crowd gathered in the US capital. PPP Secretary General Syed Nayyar Hussain Bukhari said, “Imran Khan is selected, but he should also take care of the country’s honour.” Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) Secretary General Ahsan Iqbal on Monday strongly criticised Prime Minister Khan for his policies in general and his speech in Washington in particular. Addressing a press conference in Islamabad, flanked by PML-N leaders Marriyum Aurangzeb and Dr Mussadik Malik, the former planning minister said, “Yesterday, our selected prime minister admitted that the opposition leaders were arrested on the government’s behest.” “It has revealed once again that the so-called accountability is a vengeful agenda of the government,” he said, accusing the government of “using national institutions for political gains.” Iqbal complained that, in the past, retired Gen Musharraf had used the National Accountability Bureau against politicians, and the same organisation was now being used to safeguard the government of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) led by Prime Minister Khan. “The selected prime minister is proving that he is unqualified,” the PML-N leader said. He also ridiculed Khan for, “repeating the same speech [without considering] that he is in China or in front of international capitalists”. Opposition lawmakers in the National Assembly address Khan a ‘selected’ prime minister though he came into power in August last year after winning the general elections. But it was widely believed when Khan’s PTI party won the elections as he was tacitly backed the powerful military which plays a major role in Pakistan. Pakistan’s federal Minister for Water Resources Faisal Vawda praised Prime Minister Khan’s rally in the US and said it was a message to the global community regarding the country’s integrity.