After victory over Real Mallorca, Pepe was quick to highlight the contribution of new Real Madrid midfielder Lassana Diarra.

"Lass is proving to be a great player. We have to protect him because it is not easy to play with Real Madrid, but I am sure he will succeed here," said Pepe, who also hailed skipper Raul for marking his 500th Liga game with a goal.

"Raul is an institution here and I must congratulate him because he has had a very good match."