Faustino Asprilla, former Newcastle star, has hit Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane over his lack of ‘respect’ for his countryman James Rodriguez. After a stunning 2014 World Cup campaign, Real signed the Colombian for £55million but only started him four times this season
Asprilla admits that he can not understand why so little playtime was given to Rodriguez, and even claims that the 28-year-old was too patient with Zidane.
Former Colombia forward told Blu Radio, ‘James is not reckless.’ ‘Just like everyone else, he practices every day. Coaches say all players are the same to provide replacement inspiration, but they still have three or four players. Don’t tell me that a World Cup’s top scorer is below Mariano or anyone in the pecking order.’ There’s a need for a bit of respect. James is patient, but I’d say eat s**t to Zidane!”
Last year, Rodriguez struggled for consistent playing time at the Santiago Bernabeu, having made just 13 appearances.
Rodriguez sat on Madrid’s bench after the three-month football hiatus during their first match back against Eibar but failed to make it onto the pitch despite the option of using up to five substitutions.
Zidane opted over the 28-year-old to play Ferland Mendy, Eder Militao, Gareth Bale, Vinicius Junior, and Fede Valverde. In a bid to play more first-team football, Rodriguez spent the 2017-2018 and 2018-2019 seasons on loan at Bayern Munich. He scored 15 goals during his time in Germany and recorded 20 assists in 67 matches. He also won the German Super Cup, at the Allianz Arena, two German Cups, and two Bundesliga titles.
Rodriguez has since been linked with a big-money move to the Premier League following a good season in Germany after the Bundesliga giants agreed not to sign him permanently.
The current contract for the 28-year-old at Madrid is set to expire at the end of the season 2020-21 and Zidane is unlikely to offer him a new deal.
Manchester United and Arsenal are expected to keep tabs on the midfielder this summer, to sign him.