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14th-Mar-2017

Zidane defends under-fire 'keeper Navas

By AFP, Madrid


Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane hailed goalkeeper Keylor Navas's contribution as the European champions leapfrogged Barcelona into top spot in La Liga despite the latest a series of blunders this season from the Costa Rican on Sunday.
Navas pulled off a stunning stoppage time save from Antonio Sarabia to secure a 2-1 win for Madrid over Real Betis.
However, it was his own goal that put the visitors in front at the Bernabeu and he was also extremely lucky to avoid being sent-off after just 20 minutes.
"I said to him at half-time 'anyone can make a mistake'", said Zidane.
Navas appeared to chop down Darko Brasanac on the edge of the Madrid area as he raced from his goal with no covering defenders, but referee Antonio Mateu Lahoz waived play on.
And just moments later Navas bundled Sarabia's shot into his own goal having appeared to have the effort under control.
"The most important thing for me is the support Keylor received from his teammates," added Zidane.
"They know how important he is and in the end he made a great save to get us the three points."
Madrid were once again bailed out by headers from Cristiano Ronaldo and captain Sergio Ramos.