Zinedine Zidane talks up Real Madrid's title hopes after Getafe thrashing

Zinedine Zidane talks up Real Madrid's title hopes after Getafe thrashing

Real Madrid boosted their hopes of catching Primera Division leaders Barcelona by thrashing struggling Getafe 5-1 with goals from Karim Benzema, Isco, Gareth Bale, James Rodriguez and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Benzema put Madrid in charge just before the half hour and then laid on the pass for Isco to increase the advantage before half-time.

Bale netted a milestone 16th league goal of the season five minutes after the break, surpassing his previous best goals tally in the league from 2013-14.

James and Ronaldo further punished Getafe in the final minutes after Pablo Sarabia had pulled one back for the hosts.

Hapless Getafe sank to the bottom of the table after the defeat, the first game in charge for new coach Juan Esnaider, who replaced sacked Fran Escriba last week, while Madrid collected a seventh straight league win.

Zinedine Zidane has talked up their chances of winning the Primera Division for the first time, saying he would not settle for lifting the Champions League if it meant not claiming the league title.

Although Zidane conceded after defeat to Atletico Madrid in February that the title race was over for his side, he appeared to have changed his mind after today's mauling.

"I wouldn't take winning the Champions League over the league, I can't do that," Zidane told a press conference.

"We're going to keep on working, we have to play every three days. At the moment we're one point behind the leaders (Barcelona). We are getting on with our job, the league is important for us. We're going to sleep one point off the leaders but the most important thing is the work we are doing."

Madrid provisionally go second in the league following the win, with Barcelona and Atletico both in action on Sunday, and Zidane said his team were feeling optimistic about their chances over the final weeks of the season.

"If we are going to achieve something it's because we believe we can," said the Frenchman, who saw Karim Benzema, Isco, Gareth Bale, James Rodriguez and Cristiano Ronaldo score against Getafe.

"We proved we wanted to do things well today from the start, and we respected our opponents. Now we have to keep going because we are winning games but we still haven't achieved anything.

"I don't know when they (Atletico and Barca) might slip up. We're going to watch their games tomorrow but the most important thing is what we did today. We're going to rest now because on Wednesday we play Villarreal, a very tough team."

Zidane was pleased with the performances of Rodriguez and Isco, neither of whom played a part in the 3-0 midweek win over Wolfsburg which booked Madrid's place in the Champions League semi-finals.

"I'm very impressed with them, it's not easy to not play against Wolfsburg and then to play like that. It was very important for them to play and they did a phenomenal job. I'm very happy with all the players."

Zidane took Benzema and Bale off in the second half but kept Ronaldo on, allowing the Portuguese the chance to finish off Jese's pass to score in stoppage time, as well as maintaining his run of playing every single minute in the league this season.

"Today we allowed Bale and Benzema to rest and we still haven't taken Cristiano off, we will see if we do later. He is playing well and scoring so I didn't want to take him off," said Zidane.

"Jese gifted him a goal because Jese could have scored. We are all in the same boat, and we're happy to see Cristiano score because he always looks happier when he does."

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