David Beckham compounded Real Madrid’s woes when he was sent off for verbally abusing the linesman during the club’s 2-1 defeat to already-relegated Murcia.

Beckham was shown a straight red card during his side’s Primera Liga match on Sunday for swearing at a linesman.

Real Madrid sporting director Jorge Valdano apologised to the fans after his side recorded their fourth successive league defeat – the worst run in the club’s 102-year history.

Real have now slipped from second to third place in the table.

“It is difficult to find an explanation for what has happened to us in the last two months,’ said Valdano.

“All we can do is ask for forgiveness from Madrid fans and say to them that we will try to analyse what is happening.”