Real coach tells Owen to be patient by manager

The Real Madrid coach Mariano Garcia Remon said yesterday that Michael Owen must bide his time before gaining a place in the team's starting XI.

The Real Madrid coach Mariano Garcia Remon said yesterday that Michael Owen must bide his time before gaining a place in the team's starting XI.

"I now have faith in two players and they are Ronaldo and Raul, and Owen has to understand that," the coach said. "We consider him to be extremely important to the future of Real Madrid, and sometimes the future comes little by little," he said.

Real are 10th in La Liga and host Real Betis today.

Barcelona face a major test of their form when they visit rejuvenated city rivals Espanyol today. Frank Rijkaard's side have been in irresistible form this term, dropping their only points of the season in a 1-1 draw at Atletico Madrid, but Espanyol are flying high in an unaccustomed fifth place. Midfielders Gerard and Ludovic Giuly have joined Barcelona's lengthening injury list but Samuel Eto'o has recovered after being shaken up in a car crash earlier this week.

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