Alvaro Arbeloa has defended Jose Mourinho’s work at Real Madrid, suggesting that the players should first take issue with themselves.
A disappointing third season under the Portuguese ended trophyless and, combined with reported clashes with more than one of his playing staff, resulted in the Coach’s exit this summer.
For his now former right-back, the blame for what went wrong should not all lie with the 50-year-old.
“Mourinho leaves the club disappointed, and with the players mainly,” Arbeloa told La Sexta on Wednesday.
“People may think that he is wrong on certain things or others, but everything he has done has been to the benefit of the club and the players, over his own benefit.
“He has done everything for Madrid and few here can also say that. Everyone, with the players first, must look to themselves before looking at others.
“There are people who do not like a Coach who will not let you relax. I prefer people like Mourinho, who are up front and say things to your face.
“I do not see Mourinho coming back to Real Madrid.
“I do not know if it was harassment, but sometimes the media crossed lines with Mourinho that should not have been.”
Arbeloa then reflected on his own performance through 2012-13.
“It was a difficult season personally, the worst of the four, my performances have been poor, I could have given more.
“Criticisms will always be there, although in some cases I know why they are there.
“In some cases I have been criticised for defending Mourinho, but it is what I felt.
“I have always defended the players and the Coach and I think all players should do.”
Think you know your Spanish football? Share your knowledge, tips and comments to win cash prizes in OLBG's tipster competition - £11,000 to be won monthly!