Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane will not request striker signing

Would like Barcelona to give us guard of honour Ronaldo

Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane has thrown his full support behind the heavily criticised Karim Benzema, insisting he will defend his striker "to the death".

It seems as though none of the fans are happy about Zidane's insistence on keeping faith Karim Benzema and opting out of signing a striker in January.

While the German midfielder was pleased to have another title on his resume, he claimed the win over the South American champions would add little for his side ahead of their crucial La Liga clash.

Real will face Brazilian side Gremio in the Club World Cup final on Saturday after coming from behind to beat Al Jazira 2-1 in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday evening.

Zidane told a press conference: "I don't agree with the critics". What I am concerned about isn't just him scoring all of the time.

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"I'll continue to defend him to the death".

Benzema failed to get on the scoresheet before coming off for Gareth Bale, who eventually scored Madrid's victor nine minutes before the final whistle.

"Karim is a different type of player, he will not score 50 a season, but he has many other attributes".

Zidane admits victory over Gremio would be good for momentum, but insists El Clasico is now far from their thoughts. And that is what I like in him. "Yes, we have suffered, but it happens in football - sometimes [the ball] does not want to go in and we have to play with this from time to time". They're the favourites, of course, because they've got great players and the best player in the world (Cristiano Ronaldo). Winning trophies is one of the nicest things that exists in football, so we're not thinking about Barcelona just yet.

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