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Marcelo only suffering a sprain; one week on the sidelines

It's the third muscular injury which the Brazilian has suffered this season. In happier news, Pepe was able to train with the rest of the squad this morning.


The negative news which emerged from Valdebebas on Friday was the confirmation that Marcelo has suffered a sprain to his calf muscle which will keep him sidelined for approximately one week. Initally, it was feared that the full-back had suffered a small tear but tests revealed that no serious damage has been done to muscle fibres. It's the third muscular injury which the Brazilian has suffered this season. At the start of November he was laid up for 10 days with a sprain to his left thigh muscle and later that month, he fell injured in 'El Clásico' picking up an injury to his left adductor. He also experienced problems with his shoulder in the 7 February meeting with Granada. His absence forces Zidane to rethink the left-back position for tomorrow's derby: Nacho or Carvajal are the principal candidates to cover for the injured Brazilian. Interestingly, Álvaro Arbeloa, who has filled in at left-back in the past, was absent from today's session.

The positive news is that Pepe was able to return to train with the group and appears to be over the  problems with his heel which he has been experiencing over the past few weeks. It's a boost for the centre-back on his 33rd birthday, and he could find himself back in the list for the derby.

Also back training as normal was Karim Benzema. The striker has shaken off a hip problem which kept him out of the side for last week's game at  Málaga and was able to complete his second full session with the squad this morning.

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Also present on Friday, was in-form Castilla striker Borja Mayoral - the only player from the reserves to take part in the workout.


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