Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti has admitted his side “played badly” as they survived a massive scare to remain on course to defend their Champions League crown.
Los Blancos were beaten 4-3 by Schalke at the Bernabeu on Tuesday night but still managed to progress past the last-16 stage thanks to a 2-0 win in the first leg of the tie in Germany.
The Spanish giants have now lost five times since the turn of the year and have seen arch-rivals Barcelona take over at the top of La Liga.
However, Ancelotti’s men have still managed to march on in Europe and the former Chelsea and Paris Saint-Germain coach has vowed to address their on-field issues.
Ancelotti said: “I’m so sorry because, as everyone has seen, we played very badly. It’s not good for the club. We deserve the whistles [of the fans] but they will motivate us more. I still trust this team because I know what they can give. We have to work more.
“The players and myself are the key to fixing this. We lost confidence in our game and our identity, so we can’t play how we want.
“We are professionals and we never look ridiculous. We play badly, make mistakes but never look ridiculous.
“Things change very fast in football. Nobody could have imagined something like this in December. The fans showed us their support because their whistles will wake us up.
Cristiano Ronaldo scored two of Real’s goals in the Schalke defeat to become the record scorer in UEFA club competition with 78 to his name.
Real now return to domestic matters against Levante on Sunday night and are 1.05 to win the game while the visitors are 25.00 and the draw is priced at 11.00.