Courtois denies saying Real Madrid should win La Liga title over Barcelona

Thibaut Courtois clarified his comments regarding Barcelona, saying he never said Real Madrid should be named La Liga champions.

The goalkeeper said last week Barca should not be awarded the title if the season was unable to be finished due to the coronavirus pandemic.

But La Liga is aiming to finish its season and Quique Setien's men hold a two-point lead over Madrid with 11 games to play.

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Courtois discussed his comments again on Monday and said he did not call for Madrid to be crowned champions.

"At no point did I say that Real Madrid had to be declared champions," he told Television Espanola.

"If the league ends, we're in a better position even if we lost to [Real] Betis.

"If we play the 11 remaining matches then I am confident that my team can win the league."

Courtois returned to training on Monday with La Liga aiming to get back underway in mid-June.

The Belgium international was happy to be back, albeit in unusual circumstances due to Covid-19.

"It was good to go back to training a little," Courtois said.

"But it was weird, different, but feeling the grass and training is better than nothing."

After a nightmare debut campaign at the Bernabeu, Courtois has turned it around, helping Madrid to only concede 19 league goals in 27 matches.

His Belgium international coach Roberto Martinez believes the shot-stopper showed 'great maturity' to recover from his slump.

"I think that Thibaut, everything that happened on the field of play, never affected him in a decisive way. He was aware that he wanted to improve his performances and somehow be at his natural level, Martinez told El Espanyol.

"I have watched it with great pride. To see Thibaut have to continue working and reach the level he has reached is because he is perfectly prepared to be in Real Madrid's goal.

"The easy thing would have been to throw in the towel or start blaming third parties when you're in such a difficult situation. Thibaut did the opposite. 

"He showed great maturity, great self-criticism, to the point of becoming essential at Real Madrid. There are no goalkeepers like Thibaut in modern football. 

"It has been a source of pride to see him grow so much on a human level and give the level he has given this season."

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