Real Madrid players are rallying round underfire coach Manuel Pellegrini.
El Mundo Deportivo says before training yesterday, Real's senior players told Pellegrini he could count on their total support. The Chilean spoke with the senior leadership group for 15 minutes before addressing the rest of the squad.
It's suggested the players are acting out defiantly, upset with the constant leaks to the Madrid press that Pellegrini will be replaced at the end of the season.
Sergio Ramos summed up the mood in the afternoon, saying at his scheduled media conference: "We're going to stick up for him, as he has done for us.
"Today our coach is Pellegrini and we will be with him to death. If next season he continues, we will happy because he is a great technician who brings high performance to all the players. If he continues we will be happy."