Real Madrid defend Pepe following Levante accusations

Real Madrid have released a statement in support of Pepe amid allegations that the Portuguese defender mocked Levante’s players following the 2-1 win at Ciutat de Valencia on Sunday evening.

The Spanish champions claimed a hard-fought victory thanks to a late Alvaro Morata strike, but Granotes stopper Juanfran later claimed that the former Porto man was “laughing, dancing and mocking” at the final whistle.

However, los Blancos have now moved to defend the player from the accusations, insisting that the 29-year-old had an “exemplary attitude”.

The statement read: “In relation to the incidents that occurred at the end of the match yesterday [Sunday] between our team and Levante, Real Madrid would like to declare the following:

1) The behaviour of all of our players and technical staff was exemplary during the course of the match, which was held in harsh conditions for playing football, and we overcame it with professionalism, dedication and sportsmanship.

2) At the end of the game, the attitude and behaviour of the players, coaches and members of the travelling party were correct and blameless, as it had been at all times.

3) We reject the assertions from some circles about the alleged provocations of our player Pepe to the hosts’ dressing room. The Real Madrid player always had an exemplary attitude, as did the rest of his team-mates.

4) This club will always defend the values of sportsmanship and respect that must prevail in the game.”

Madrid currently sit third in La Liga, eight points behind leaders Barcelona.

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