Albert Riera and Raul Tamudo struck for Espanyol before Sergio Ramos grabbed a consolation goal for Real in injury-time from a corner kick.

Several of his team had flown back from other parts of the world to take part last night, but Schuster insisted: "I do not believe that it has influenced the result. It was bad luck. It is not necessary to look for reasons nor excuses for the game we have played.

"We were beaten by an excellent Espanyol, which produced a great game. And it is not necessary to look back. There's no point.

"If you want to be with Real Madrid, you know that these situations can happen and you cannot be complaining. It is the price for having so many internationals. I have already said on many occasions that you can be proud to have such a good squad, but there are also great risks that go with it."

Wesley Sneijder, however, disagreed with his coach: "The international break hurt us. Many players were away and we couldn't train together and prepare for the match tonight."