Lopetegui not worried about Atletico's extra rest ahead of El Derbi

Atletico has had a day more to prepare for Saturday's El Derbi, but Real Madrid coach Julen Lopetegui said that will not be decisive.

Real Madrid head coach Julen Lopetegui   -  Getty Images

Real Madrid boss Julen Lopetegui does not believe that Atletico Madrid having more time to prepare for El Derbi will be a factor in Saturday's LaLiga clash.

Atletico eased to a 3-0 home win over Huesca on Tuesday, with Madrid suffering its first league loss under Lopetegui the following day, going down 3-0 at Sevilla.

With Barcelona also beaten on Wednesday, losing to struggling Leganes, last season's champion and Madrid remains locked together at the top of LaLiga with Atletico two points behind.

READ: Marcelo, Gelson doubts for Real Madrid vs Atletico Madrid

Lopetegui, though, rejected suggestions Atletico's extra day of rest could give Diego Simeone's men the edge ahead of their short trip to the Santiago Bernabeu.

"One day less doesn't worry me, I don't think about that. We've got good energy and we're ready, so that's more important. The motivation is there, you need motivation for games like this," Lopetegui told a media conference.

"We're on good form even though we didn't have a good first half the other day [against Sevilla]. In general we're in good shape."

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"We've been playing every three days recently and I think the second half against Sevilla was good. The side physically is good, other things and football matters come into play, but physically no problems."

"I expect a balanced, demanding game that will be hard. We will have to compete, play as well, but compete. We are ready for this game against a very good opponent who will make things hard for us. That's what we expect, a game of the highest level, we have no doubts about that."

"We can't look for excuses now, the calendar is like that. Energy and motivation have to be above all these things and we have that at the moment going into these games."

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Despite slipping up against Sevilla, Lopetegui feels that Madrid has made a strong start to the season in both LaLiga and the Champions League, having opened with a 3-0 defeat of Roma in Europe.

"The truth is perception from outside can be different, but they are very motivated to win the league and we are doing well, at the top in a good position but there's a long way to go. It will be a long season for all the contenders to win the league but motivation is very high," Lopetegui added.

"I'm happy with what my team has given me. Like all sides sometimes we do things better and sometimes worse, but our analysis after six games is that attitude and the way players go into games with their motivation - there are no doubts whatsoever in my side."

"I just want us to go into a big game and give our fans something to shout about, it doesn't matter if the opponent is Atletico Madrid, the motivation is always the same for a game like this." Marcelo is expected to miss Saturday's match after Madrid confirmed the Brazil left-back has a calf injury.

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