With five days left for the final match in Lisbon for the Champions League, a lot of things are happening at Real Madrid’s training camp, and I-Sports Web gives you an insight on exclusive of what is happening today at Valdebebas.
Carlo Ancelotti received good news yesterday about his injured players, but with only five days for Lisbon, he needs to decide who’s going to be in the list.
Right now, Pepe continues to evolve from his injury, and if he doesn’t suffer further complications, he will play the final in Lisbon.
If Pepe’s presence is a serious concern on defense, the attacking squad has their concerns as well.
Cristiano Ronaldo had some issues during the warm up last Saturday, but sources close to the club can reveal he’s ready for the match against Atletico at Lisbon.
Yesterday, he was subjected to tests that did not detect any serious ailment, which guarantees his presence in the final match.
However, Karim Benzema has more problems physically, and today his presence in the starting team is unknown. Ancelotti has two players ready and one in doubt just days before the biggest game of the season and the last decade.
The reality right now is that Ancelotti can’t guarantee one hundred percent that Benzema will play. The French suffered a strained hamstring in his left leg.
I-Sports Web spoke in London with St. Mary’s University Physiotherapist, Tom Rodgers, who gave us a picture of what is happening with Benzema.
“It is a serious injury and is uncomfortable and difficult to recover one hundred percent in just five days. In this sense, time runs against Benzema,” Rodgers said.
In case that Ancelotti decided to put him in the starting line, without full recovery, this could bring serious consequences for the French striker as Rodgers said: “If Benzema plays without a full healing, this could jeopardize his participation in the World Cup, in Brazil.”
These physical problems of Ronaldo and Benzema will prevent Carlo Ancelotti to train them with his team all week.
Both the Portuguese and the French are going to be until the day of the final in special measurements, and if they recovered quickly, they would join the team practices on Thursday.
Until then, they’ll be in the hands of the white team physios to arrive as well as possible to the final. In both cases, it seems unlikely that the two are one hundred percent for the match against Atletico.
This setback joins the biggest dilemma of Ancelotti, Xabi Alonso’s absence in midfield. Ancelotti’s move for this issue is Illarramendi.
The fact that Illarra played 90 minutes against Espanyol at the position Xabi was playing all year is the last statement from the Italian coach, who said in two occasions: “Illarra is the first choice for Lisbon.”
Ancelotti will dedicate all week to work on offensive and defensive movements with Illarra, Modric and Di Maria in midfield. This block seems to be the starting line for Lisbon and today, they trained very well.
The only issue is that from the attacking block, only Bale was practicing without his two partners in crime.
Benzema’s doubt will reach the limit, and this issue opens the doors for Isco Alarcon.
Ancelotti already knows the remake performance of Isco in key games this season after the injury of a player above, as with Christian in the Cup final and Bale against Bayern at the Bernabeu.
The Italian coach showed during midseason that Isco could do more than a midfielder. Ancelotti said once that Isco could become the new Clarence Seedorf and the matches against Barca and Bayern began to reinforce Ancelotti’s statement. They were two great games at the highest level for Isco, which credited him to contest the final match in Lisbon.
However, beyond what happens on Saturday, Isco’s season has been more than acceptable in terms of numbers for those concerned. He has played 52 matches so far, 35 of them in the holder and has scored 11 goals, eight at La Liga and three in Champions League.