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Bale, Pepe and Cristiano could miss Madrid's US Tour

Commitments at Euro 2016 and Copa América mean that Zidane will be without several players until late into the pre-season. Cristiano, Bale and Pepe could miss the US Tour.
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Bale, Pepe and Cristiano could miss Madrid's US Tour

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A busy summer calendar packed with events has left Zinedine Zidane with a problem in how best to organize the squad's pre-season. The first players are due to arrive back for work in Valdebebas on 15 July;  in total, 13 players will have had 47 days of holidays (Keylor, Kiko Casilla, Yáñez, Varane, Carvajal, Danilo, Marcelo, Nacho, Isco, Jesé and Benzema) - apart from Casemiro, who was at Copa América with Brazil until 13 June (32 days holiday) and Coentrao, who is injured.

Zidane will be expecting the arrival of the second group, of three players, on 25 July. Modrić and Kovačić were involved at the Euros until Croatia were eliminated by Portugal on 25 June, and James, who was at Copa América until 26 June. The Croatians will have 30 days of holidays and James, one less - 29. The Spanish internationals, Ramos, Morata and Lucas Vázquez, will arrive two days later on 27th.

The biggest headache concerns those who took part in the semi-finals at Euro 2016, or who will be playing the final this Sunday. Bale and Toni Kroos are waiting to hold a meeting to find out how many days holiday they will be given - both want 30 days. Cristiano and Pepe who will be taking part in Sunday's final against France, would need to return to work on 1 August to enjoy 21 days holiday - the minimum indicated under AFE regulations. Madrid are weighing up the possibility that they may miss the United States tour, where the final game is on 3 August against Bayern Munich.

All of the players who will be arriving back late will need a certain amount of preparation before the European Super Cup final against Sevilla in Trondheim, Norway on 9 August; a couple of years ago, Toni Kroos won the World Cup with Germany on 13 July and joined Madrid for the pre-season on 5 August, after just 22 days' holidays, before featuring in the starting XI for the Super Cup final in Cardiff a week later.