Isco Refused The Captain’s Armband Against CSKA Moscow, Reveals Marcelo

REUTERS/Juan Medina

Isco has endured a torrid time ever since Santiago Solari replaced Julen Lopetegui at the managerial helm of Real Madrid. The playmaker has heavily struggled for game-time, amid further reports of an internal struggle at the Bernabeu.

The Spaniard was awarded a rare start during Los Blancos’ final Champions League group stage fixture against CSKA Moscow, which they shockingly lost 3-0, allowing the Russians to complete a stunning double over the reigning European champions.

Solari did field a slightly weakened team for the encounter, but it did feature big names like Karim Benzema, Marco Asensio, and Marcelo, alongside Isco.

However, the Galacticos still failed to resist the Moscow-based visitors, who had already established a 2-goal lead before half-time.

Apart from the result, yet another unusual incident occurred during the game, involving Marcelo and Isco.

The Brazilian was named the side’s captain on the night. But when he was subbed off, the full-back handed over the captain’s armband to Isco, which the latter straightaway refused.

Marcelo spoke about the incident after the game, telling AS: “I tried to give the armband to Isco [when I came off for Dani Carvajal]. But he told me that I had to give it to Carvajal. I don’t know what the reason for that was.”

Isco was also seen making a gesture towards the home supporters, who apparently targeted the playmaker after getting frustrated with the side’s display on the pitch.

When asked about this supposed gesture, Marcelo simply dismissed it, stating: “I didn’t see Isco’s reaction, but I don’t think it was against the fans. We’re here to give our all for this club. We’re really hurting, but all we can do is recover and focus on the weekend.”

All evidently doesn’t seem well for the 26-year-old midfielder at the Spanish capital. More transfer speculation incoming?